Blog post picture of a suburban neighborhood, titled "The Differences Between Market-Rate and Affordable Housing"

The Differences Between Market-Rate and Affordable Housing

If you’ve been involved in the housing industry for any period of time, you’ve probably heard the terms “market-rate housing” and “affordable housing.” But what exactly is the difference between the two? Don’t worry, we’ll break it down for you.


Market-Rate Housing

Market-Rate Housing is also known as conventional housing. This just means that the property does not have any type of subsidy, and the resident pays the full amount of the rent that is determined by the market.

Attributes of Market-Rate Housing:

  • The lease terms are customizable
  • No restrictions on additional services and fees you are able to provide to the tenant
  • You can non-renew a lease for any reason
  • The rent is not guaranteed (residents may or may not pay, might be late on rent)
    • Late payments/refusal to pay could lead to eviction
  • You can create your own screening criteria
  • There’s no limit on the rental amount that you can charge
    • Rent is dictated by what someone is willing to pay for the unit

If you want to check out our available market-rate properties, click here.


Affordable Housing

Affordable Housing is also known as subsidized housing, meaning that the property is receiving a subsidy from a governmental agency whereby the resident is only responsible for a portion of the rent. This portion of the rent that they owe is typically based on their income.

Attributes of Affordable Housing:

  • Lease terms are subject to the agency issuing the subsidy
  • The rental subsidy payments may be subject to property inspections from the agency
  • You are limited in reasons for non-renewing a lease
  • The rent is guaranteed by the agency issuing the subsidy
  • Your screening criteria is also dependent on the agency that’s issuing the subsidy
  • The rental amount is dictated by the agency that’s issuing the subsidy
  • There are income restrictions for residents to qualify

If you want to learn more about the different types of Section 8, check out this blog post.

If you want to check out our available affordable housing properties, click here.


All in All

Whether the property is market-rate or affordable housing, our primary goal is still the same: to provide safe and habitable housing for all of our residents, as well as professional management services to meet our clients’ goals for any property that we manage. 

We have 40+ years of expertise in all aspects of housing in and around the Pittsburgh area, Western Pennsylvania, and West Virginia, so if you have any questions, feel free to contact us!