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Opinion
Conor Sen

U.S. Housing Crisis Only Gets Worse as Population Shrinks

Declining populations in many cities means more people are moving to fewer places where affordability will get worse, not better.

Boise may be booming, but most other places are shrinking.

Boise may be booming, but most other places are shrinking.

Source: Bloomberg

News that the U.S. population barely grew this year, together with ever-falling birthrates and the decline in immigration, raises the possibility that the nation will be shrinking in the not-so-distant future. So fewer people should make housing more affordable for those looking for it, right? Well, don't get your hopes up.

People tend not to want to live in shrinking places, and if the U.S. population starts to decline, it might lead to even less housing demand in stagnant metro areas, and an even worse housing affordability crisis in the smaller number of places that continue to attract new residents.