This report outlines the key findings of the 2016 Point-in-Time (PIT) count and Housing Inventory Count (HIC) conducted in January 2016. Specifically, this report provides 2016 national, state, and CoC-level PIT and HIC estimates of homelessness, including estimates for homeless veterans, homeless children and youth, chronically homeless perPROGRESS ON THE FEDERAL STRATEGIC PLAN TO PREVENT AND END HOMELESSNESSsons, homeless families with children, and homeless individuals.

As usual, HUD did a great job presenting the AHAR data. The amount of data is immense, so it’s not an easy task. They used beautifully designed charts and infographics to help you really dig into the data.

But perhaps you don’t quite have the time this week to really sit down with this year’s AHAR. Maybe all you have time for today is a quick summary. We want to give you the information you need right now so you can carry on with the pressing tasks of the day.

If you only have time for the quick, 30-second overview, here it is:

  • In general, part 1 of the 2016 AHAR showed promising progress in our nation’s efforts to end homelessness. PIT estimates show declines across all homeless subpopulations, with the largest decline seen in numbers of homeless veterans. The numbers for chronic homelessness highlight the vulnerability of this group, as this is the only subpopulation with more people unsheltered than sheltered.
  • While some deadlines will need to be readjusted regarding the goals outlined in Opening Doors: Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness, huge steps have been taken to prevent and end homelessness across the country.

If you have a little more time, below are the key findings from the 2016 AHAR listed in a quick, easy-to-read format that takes about 7 minutes to digest.

We present details for the following 6 official AHAR categories:

  1. All Homeless People
  2. Veterans
  3. Unaccompanied Youth
  4. Chronically Homeless
  5. Familes with Children
  6. Individuals

At the end of the article, we also provide an update on the four core goals from Opening Doors: Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness.

1. All Homeless People

Total Sheltered and Unsheltered

  • On a single night in 2016, 549,928 people were experiencing homelessness in the United States.
  • The majority, 68 percent, was staying in emergency shelters, transitional housing programs, or safe havens—and 32 percent were in unsheltered locations.

Age of People Experiencing Homelessness

  • Of all people experiencing homelessness…
    • 22 percent were under age 18
    • 9 percent were between the ages 18 and 24
    • 69 percent were over the age 24

Overall Decrease/Increase

  • Between 2015 and 2016, homelessness declined by 3 percent. Declines in the numbers of people staying in sheltered locations (5 percent) were offset by increases in the numbers of people staying in unsheltered locations (2 percent).
  • Between 2007 and 2016, homelessness declined by 15 percent.

2. Veterans

  • In January 2016, 39,471 veterans were experiencing homelessness (amounting to 7 percent of the homeless population).
  • 33 percent were in unsheltered locations.
  • Nearly all (97 percent) were homeless in households without children (as individuals).
  • Between 2015 and 2016, veteran homelessness declined by 17 percent (more than 8,000 people).
  • Between 2009 and 2016, veteran homelessness declined by 46 percent.

3. Unaccompanied Youth

  • In January 2016, there were 35,686 unaccompanied homeless youth (under the age of 25), amounting to 7 percent of the homeless population.
  • Of all homeless unaccompanied youth…
    • 89 percent were between the ages 18 and 24
    • 11 were under the age 18

4. Chronically Homeless

  • There were 77,486 individuals and 8,646 people in families with children with chronic patterns of homelessness.
  • 68 percent were staying in unsheltered locations. NOTE: This is the only population for which the number of unsheltered people is greater than the number staying in sheltered locations, emphasizing the vulnerability of this group.
  • Between 2015 and 2016, individual chronic homelessness declined by 7 percent.
  • Between 2007 and 2016, individual chronic homelessness declined by 35 percent.

5. Families With Children

  • There were 194,716 people in families with children (just fewer than 62,000 households) experiencing homelessness, amounting to 35 percent of the homeless population.
  • Of all homeless people in families with children…
    • 60 percent were under the age 18
    • 8 percent were between the ages 18 and 24
    • 32 percent were over age 24
  • Between 2015 and 2016…
    • The number of homeless people in families with children declined by 6 percent.
    • The number of homeless family households declined by 5 percent.
    • The number of sheltered people and unsheltered people in families declined by 6 percent.
  • There were approximately 10,000 young parents, under the age of 25, in families with children. Nearly all (99 percent) were between the ages of 18 and 24.
  • Between 2007 and 2016…
    • The number of homeless people in families with children declined by 17 percent.
    • The number of homeless family households declined by 22 percent.

6. Individuals

  • There were 355,212 people experiencing homelessness as individuals (amounting to 65 percent of the homeless population).
  • Of all homeless individuals…
    • 1 percent were under the age 18
    • 10 percent were between 18 and 24
    • 89 percent were over the age 24
  • Between 2015 and 2016, individual homelessness declined by less than 1 percent. Declines in the numbers of sheltered individuals (4 percent) were offset by increases in the numbers of unsheltered individuals (3 percent).
  • Between 2007 and 2016, individual homelessness declined by 14 percent.

Progress On The Federal Strategic Plan To Prevent And End Homelessness

In 2010, the Administration released Opening Doors: Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness. This document is a comprehensive agenda to prevent and end homelessness, focusing on 4 core goals. These goals are listed below, with a summary of 2016’s update on their progress.

Goal: Finish the job of ending chronic homelessness by 2017

  • In January 2016…
    • There were 77,000 chronically homeless individuals.
    • 32 percent were sheltered.
  • Between 2010 and 2016, the number of chronically homeless individuals declined by 27 percent.
  • Between 2015 and 2016 alone, chronic homelessness declined by 7 percent.

Goal: Prevent and end homelessness among veterans by 2015

  • In January 2016…
    • Fewer than 40,000 veterans were experiencing homelessness
    • 64 percent were sheltered.
  • Between 2010 and 2016, the number of homeless veterans declined by 47 percent.
  • Between 2015 and 2016 alone, veteran homelessness declined by 17 percent.

Goal: Prevent and end homelessness for families, youth, and children by 2020

  • In January 2016…
    • Approximately 195,000 people in families with children were experiencing homelessness.
    • There were fewer than 62,000 homeless family households.
  • Between 2010 and 2016…
    • The number of homeless people in families with children declined by 20 percent.
    • The number of homeless family households declined by 23 percent.
  • Between 2015 and 2016 alone…
    • The number of homeless people in familes with children declined by 6 percent.
    • The number of homeless family households declined by 5 percent.
  • In January 2016, there were 35,686 unaccompanied homeless youth.

Goal: Set a path to ending all types of homelessness

  • In January 2016…
    • There were 549,928 people experiencing homelessness.
    • 68 percent were sheltered.
  • Between 2010 and 2016…
    • Homelessness has declined by 14 percent.
    • Unsheltered homelessness has declined by 25 percent.
  • Between 2015 and 2016 alone, the number of people experiencing homelessness declined by 3 percent.

In Sum…

We hope this summary has helped you get up to speed with this newly released information! We strongly recommend setting aside time to take a closer look at the report for more demographic statistics, infographics, progress of individual states and CoCs, comparisons over the years, and more.