February 5, 2024

2024 Virginia Beach Housing Study Now Available

Study highlights trends and proposed strategies to address affordable housing needs.

Housing in Virginia Beach

Supporting the creation and maintenance of affordable housing is among the City’s top priorities. In November 2022, the City Council approved an ordinance to fund an update of the last housing study, completed in 2016. This initiative is also included in the City’s FY 24-25 Focused Action Plan.

An updated study was needed to analyze the current housing market and identify strategies to address housing needs in Virginia Beach, considering the pandemic and other demographic changes that have had a major impact over the last several years.

During the past year, consultants with the Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech (VCHR) and HousingForward Virginia analyzed local and regional data, best practices and input from multiple engagement opportunities, including an online survey, public meetings, expert focus groups and interviews with council members.

At a City Council special formal session last month, Housing & Neighborhood Preservation Director Ruth Hill shared the consultants’ insights and proposed strategies outlined in the 2024 Virginia Beach Housing Study.

VCHR and HousingForward Virginia concluded that while we have a balanced, healthier housing market in Virginia Beach since the last study, increased competition and limited options are presenting new challenges, especially for seniors living on their own, younger generations and families with low income.

To address affordable housing needs in Virginia Beach, the consultants have proposed eight overall strategies for City Council’s consideration:

  • Develop a City-managed Housing Trust Fund (HTF)
  • Use Virginia Beach Development Authority (VBDA) to fund new large-scale, mixed-use development projects
  • Design housing education campaign to incorporate into successful community engagement
  • Create a Housing Assistance Fund for workers
  • Leverage Virginia Statewide Community Land Trust (VSCLT) to create permanent affordable homeownership opportunities
  • Pursue self-sustaining mixed-income, mixed-use rental development
  • Research opportunities to simplify and streamline the permitting and review processes
  • Consider advisory board to guide new zoning changes and redesign Workforce Housing Program

A consumer report summarizing highlights from the study and the full, detailed report that expands on the consultants’ data analysis and recommendations are available at VirginiaBeach.gov/HousingStudy.

Staff will seek City Council’s feedback and direction on potential next steps in March after the council has had the opportunity to review and discuss the information presented in the final report.

Contact Information

Housing & Neighborhood Preservation

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