Emerging themes on aging in place from low-income older renters

Sung Jin Lee, Daejin Kim, Suk Kyung Kim, Kathleen R. Parrott, Valerie L. Giddings, S. Renee Robinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


This phenomenological study focused on low-income older renters‘ challenges that affected their aging in place. We conducted 25 in-depth interviews with low-income older renters, using a semi-structured questionnaire. The questions focused on socio-demographic characteristics, renting profiles, most and least favored aspects about being a renter, and future plans and challenges. We transcribed qualitative data, employed keyword-in-context analysis, and then identified emerging themes. We found that life changes, insufficient financial support, or unmet maintenance issues with one’s previous housing affected being a renter. Freedom from maintenance concerns was the most positive aspect about being a renter while the absence of ownership was the most negative aspect. Most respondents wanted to stay in their current unit due to a lack of resources or future plans. Health concerns were the most cited challenges when aging in place. Three themes for low-income older renters‘ aging in place emerged: (1) housing affordability, (2) home environment to support autonomy, and (3) resources for formal and informal support systems. This qualitative study provides an opportunity to better understand low-income older renters’ aging in place, a topic that has been understudied in the field of housing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-127
Number of pages18
JournalHousing and Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2019 May 4

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture [NC.X-297-5-16-170-1 (CRIS #106719)].

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture [NC.X-297-5-16-170-1 (CRIS #106719)]. The project described was supported by Project Number, NC.X-297-5-16-170-1 from USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture. We would like to recognize the Beacon Management Corporation and the Greensboro Housing Coalition (GHC) for sharing their insight about service to the older population and the community needs, and for assisting in the sample recruitment for our research project.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, © 2019 Housing Education and Research Association.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Urban Studies


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