(Source: Wendy Dialesandro, The Portager)

Portage County is among the worst counties in Ohio for housing affordability, with residents spending a higher percentage of their income on their rent and other housing costs, according to a recently released U.S. Census Bureau report.

Portage County is second only to Athens County in high housing expenses, with 6.7% of residents paying 30% to 34.9% of their income on housing costs, while 46.9% spend 35% or more to live in one of the county’s 17,288 rental units.

Rentals are not considered to be affordable if occupants have to pay more than 30% of their income on housing costs, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

“Affordable housing, or the lack thereof, is probably the biggest problem in Portage County,” said David Shea, director of Community Action Council of Portage County, which fights poverty through financial assistance programs. >>> READ STORY