Sherry Ahrentzen

Shimberg Center for Housing Studies, University of Florida

Sherry Ahrentzen, PhD, is the Shimberg Professor of Housing Studies at the University of Florida. Her research focuses on housing and community design that fosters the physical, social and economic health of households. She recently completed a three-year study examining the impacts of green building on resident health of low-income seniors in Phoenix. She has also co-authored a book with Kim Steele on designing housing for adults with autism, titled At Home with Autism: Designing for the Spectrum. She currently co-leads a multidisciplinary team of faculty and graduate students examining how the design and planning of our built environment can advance the health of older adults in residential settings. This team is one of the inaugural cohorts of the AIA Consortium of Design and Health Research. 


The built environment and housing have pronounced effects on community health. This study will look at the reach of Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) programs and their potential to produce healthier rental housing that serves low-income and vulnerable populations. The research will focus on four research questions:


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Our homes and neighborhoods have a powerful impact on our physical and mental health, with the potential to exacerbate chronic and acute health problems and cost the U.S. billions of dollars annually. Sherry Ahrentzen and Lynne Dearborn investigated how the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), the nation’s largest source of funding for the development and preservation of affordable rental housing, can contribute to shaping a healthier housing stock.