Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

June 7, 2024

MaineHousing: Number of homeless Mainers has declined, but so has related funding

MaineHousing Point in Time report on homelessness, bar chart. Image / Courtesy, MaineHousing This year's point-in-time report by MaineHousing shows a decline in the number of people experiencing homelessness since 2023. However, the reduction does not necessarily represent fewer people experiencing housing crises and homelessness, the agency noted.

An annual estimate of the number of Mainers experiencing homelessness shows a decline from last year, but comes with a caveat that the snapshot isn't the full picture.

The point-in-time count is required by the federal government of each state, and is used to assess homelessness nationally and to determine funding to address the problem.

This year’s survey in Maine was conducted on Jan. 23. The count of 2,695 people statewide is 1,031 fewer than the 2023 tally. But researchers warned that the reduction does not necessarily mean fewer people are experiencing homelessness.

“The count provides a detailed view of homelessness at a single point in time, which is valuable for comparing year to year changes,” said Jonny Kurzfeld, MaineHousing’s planning and research director. "However, that view necessarily lacks context about homeless trends and policy changes, creating a real risk of harmful misinterpretation of the data."

The unusual variation in the count over the past few years stems from COVID-related housing relief programs and funding, which had marked but finite effects, MaineHousing said. They came on top of the pandemic itself, which directly affected housing and the delivery of homeless services, further complicating data comparison.

Data collection, organized by nine regional coordinators, still remains an important exercise, helping raise awareness and refocus outreach and response work, according to MaineHousing.

More information

To read the full report, click here

Sign up for Enews

Related Content


Order a PDF