Emerging Trends

Living in Brookline

Brookline is almost equally split between renter-occupied (51%) and owner-occupied (49%) housing. Both housing types are in high-demand, with just 3.8% of rental units and 1.3% of owner-occupied units vacant in 2010. Residential property values have been relatively resilient through the recession, and rental rates increased well above the rate of inflation.  

  • More people in the same space: The average household size grew from 2.18 to 2.27 individuals over the decade, counter to a trend of shrinking households in the region, state, and nation. This shift can be explained by and increase in the number of families in Brookline, a growing average family household size, and fewer singles opting to live alone.

  • Larger share of income: Brookline residents are paying more of their income on housing than they did a decade ago; 49% of renters pay 30% or more of their income on rent, and 34.5% of homeowners spend 30% or more of their income on a mortgage.

  • Affordable housing scarce: Brookline public housing has multi-year waiting lists, and residents with federal and state housing vouchers struggle to find property owners willing to accept these vouchers.



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