Housing is typically the biggest expense for most people. There’s a lot of debate about how much of one's income should go towards it, but a widely accepted threshold is about 30%, which has its origins in federal legislation regarding affordable housing for renters. If one is above the threshold, they’re considered cost-burdened. This rule is not without its caveats. Lifestyle, spending habits, number of dependents and income all play a role in whether one is really "cost-burdened."

Data from the Census Bureau show that in 2011, 40% of renters and homeowners in Connecticut, more than 545,000 households, were cost-burdened.

Ten years later, in 2021, the state’s share dropped to 34%, fewer than 480,000 households. Overall, there was a 12% decrease in the number of cost-burdened households.

The share of cost-burdened households increased in 17 towns, but most of them only by 1 to 3 percentage points. The highest increase was in Mansfield, an increase of 8 percentage points, from 37.3% to 45.8%. Ashford experienced the largest decrease in share, going from 39.3% to 19.8%, followed by Goshen and Durham at 18 and 17 percentage points respectively.

Despite decreases in their share of cost-burdened households from 2011 to 2021, Hartford, New Haven and Bridgeport still experienced the highest shares in both years, with about half of the households in each town being cost-burdened.

Read more: CT has changed in the last decade. Here are 10 charts that show how