The term acceptable housing refers to housing that is acceptable in condition, suitable in size, and affordable. Adequate housing does not require any major repairs according to residents. Suitable housing has enough bedrooms for the size and makeup of the residents. Affordable housing costs less than 30% of before tax income (rent, plus payments for water, electricity, fuel and other municipal services). A household is in core housing need if its housing does not meet one or more of the adequacy, suitability or affordability standards.
Estimates of core housing needs in an area are derived by comparing the incomes of households currently living in unacceptable housing with the incomes required to access adequate, suitable and affordable housing in their communities. This percentage figure is known as the Core Need Income Threshold. Niagara’s core housing need was slightly above 10% in 2006.