As mentioned in our post on March 15th, U.S. Housing Crisis, the social and economic costs of failing to address this countries’ chronic shortage of affordable units available to extremely low-income people, greatly outweighs the cost of investing in affordable housing. Without access to subsidized permanent housing, many extremely low-income individuals and families are on the verge of homelessness. Research by the National Alliance to End Homelessness and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) clearly indicates that homelessness leads to an increased use of emergency shelters, prisons and jails, and emergency medical and hospitalization services. The costs of such an increase compared with the cost of supportive housing has been summarized by The Homelessness Research Institute.