The population of Rhode Island, according to the 2010 Census, is 1,052,567. The total number of households in the state is 413,600. The average household size for Rhode Island is 2.35. The total number of renter households in the state is 162,648 which means that 39.32% of households are renter households. Compared to all other U.S. States, Rhode Island is ranked 6th in percentage of renters. District Of Columbia is ranked first with 57.99% and West Virginia ranks last with only 26.55%.
According to the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, the median rent paid among all renter households and housing types and sizes in Rhode Island is $904 per month. Ranked against all other states in the country, Rhode Island ranks 17th for the highest median rent. Hawaii ranks first at $1,387 and West Virginia ranks last at $618. Though rents are set more locally, statewide median rents provide a basic outlook of housing costs for each state.
The number of vacant rental units in Rhode Island is 10,571 representing a vacancy rate of 6.9%. Among all U.S. states, Rhode Island ranks 20th for the lowest vacancy rates. New York ranks first with a vacancy rate of 4.5% and South Carolina ranks last with a vacancy rate of 12.9%. As lower vacancy rates are an indication of a healthier rental housing portfolio, Rhode Island’s rental housing portfolio is performing above the National average.
|Project Based Section 8||152||13,811|
|Section 8 Voucher||28‡||10,638|
|Note: The total does not necessarily equal the sum of each program as some properties may participate in multiple funding programs.
‡This program is not project based, instead Housing Authorities provide vouchers to individual renters. In the state of Rhode Island there are 28 independent Housing Authorities that may issue these vouchers.
The average number of units per property for affordable rentals in Rhode Island is 67.90. The largest market for federally assisted housing in the state is Providence at 7,860 units and the smallest is Warren at 10 unit(s). 100 apartment properties provide housing for seniors containing 6,854 units. Of the 24,369 units, 45,870 units include some form of rental assistance (like Section 8) to make rent more affordable for very low income families.
There are 5 counties or county equivalents in Rhode Island. The county or county equivalent with the largest population is Providence County at 626,667 and the smallest is Bristol County at 49,875. The county or county equivalent with the largest percentage of renter households is Providence County at 46.07% and The county or county equivalent with lowest portion of renters is Washington County at 26.79%.
The density of Federal housing assistance at the county level in Rhode Island ranges from a low of 138.7 units per 1,000 renter households in Bristol County to a high of 230.2 units per 1,000 renter households in Providence County. The average Federal housing assistance density for all counties in Rhode Island is 194.2 units per 1,000 renter households.
The table below summarizes the Federally assisted housing located in each county in Rhode Island. All major affordable housing programs are provided on a county by county basis. Click on the name of the county to see a more in depth summary of affordable housing in that county.
|County||Sec 8||Sec 811||Sec 202||LIHTC||RD 515||Sr||Total Units|
We are tracking 46 cities in Rhode Island that have at least one Federally assisted housing community. With a population of 1,052,567, Block Island has the largest population of these cities. There are 1 Federally assisted housing communities in Block Island which are home to about 16 families, most of which are lower income families.
The table below provides a summary of all Federally assisted housing communities by city in Rhode Island. All the major affordable housing funding program breakdowns are provided. Click on the city name to get a full affordable rental housing report for each city in Rhode Island.
|City||Sec 8||Sec 811||Sec 202||LIHTC||RD 515||Sr||Total Units|
Housing authorities are governmental (or quasi-governmental) entities that manage various Federal housing assistance programs on behalf of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These programs include Public Housing, Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers and other programs.
There are 28 housing authorities in Rhode Island. These housing authorities own and operate an aggregate of public housing units and administer Section 8 rental vouchers. Of the 28 housing authorities, 85.7% have both a public housing and Section 8 program.
The largest housing authority in Rhode Island by total housing assistance units managed is Providence Housing Authority with 5,006 public housing units under management (2,605 public housing units and 2,401 Section 8 vouchers).
The table below provides a list of housing authorities in Rhode Island and includes each housing authorities public housing and Section 8 voucher count. Click on the housing authority name to get more details on the housing authority.
|Name||Public Housing Units||Section 8 Vouchers|
|Providence Housing Authority||2,605||2,401|
|Woonsocket Housing Authority||1,208||734|
|Pawtucket Housing Authority||1,077||761|
|Rhode Island Housing||-||1,660|
|The Housing Authority of the City of Newport||710||489|
|Central Falls Housing Authority||327||553|
|Cranston Housing Authority||611||257|
|Warwick Housing Authority||517||349|
|East Providence Housing Authority||419||445|
|Cumberland Housing Authority||176||384|
|Coventry Housing Authority||195||278|
|Bristol Housing Authority||192||251|
|Warren Housing Authority||153||224|
|Lincoln Housing Authority||252||124|
|Johnston Housing Authority||155||205|
|West Warwick Housing Authority||250||97|
|North Providence Housing Authority||144||193|
|Westerly Housing Authority||123||198|
|East Greenwich Housing Authority||27||292|
|South Kingstown Housing Authority||70||138|
|Narragansett Housing Authority||12||182|
|Burrillville Housing Authority||76||84|
|Portsmouth Housing Authority||40||85|
|Smithfield Housing Authority||50||53|
|Tiverton Housing Authority||45||51|
|Kent County Mental Health Center||-||75|
|Gateway Healthcare, Inc.||-||75|
|Jamestown Housing Authority||35||-|
The Public Housing Program is the largest assistance program by unit count. The program assists 31,552 in Rhode Island. The charts below lay out how each Federal program impact affordable housing in Rhode Island.
Average Household Size
Gross Rent Paid By All Renters
Vacant Units For Rent
Federally Assisted Units
Federally Assisted Projects
Tax Credit Projects/Units
Project Based Section 8 Projects/Units
Section 515 Projects/Units
Section 202 Projects/Units
Section 811 Projects/Units
RD Rental Assisted Projects/Units
Units with Project Based Rent Subsidy
Average Units Per Property