Housing Affordability

Barnstable County’s housing market has been shaped by both long-standing factors, including Cape Cod’s appeal to generations of retirees and visitors, historical development patterns, natural resource constraints, and acute events including the housing market crash of 2009 and the COVID-19 pandemic. Taken together, these factors have created a highly constrained housing market that does not meet the diverse needs of Barnstable County’s residents. One of the core challenges to the adequate provision of affordable housing is the gap between the region’s comparatively low average wages and comparatively high housing costs: the median household income falls short of the amount needed to affordably purchase a median-priced home in all fifteen Barnstable County towns.