A recent benchmark housing needs assessment conducted by the Martha’s Vineyard Commission paints an increasingly dire picture of the Island’s housing crisis.


A series of recently-completed housing plans show a year-round population straining under the weight of rents and mortgages amid prohibitive building costs and the pressures of a seasonal real estate market.


Low wages and a seasonal economy are a recipe for hardship for those looking for housing on the Vineyard and other resort communities, with high-cost second homes raising prices.


There are consistent problems when it comes to housing needs on the Vineyard: an affordability gap, caused by high housing prices in a largely seasonal community paired with low wages, has long made it hard for year-round residents to rent or own housing on the Island.


Housing Crisis Spurs Initiatives

Grim Housing Needs Assessment Underscores Important Search to Ease Lack of Affordable Shelter on the Vineyard


Twenty-eight million dollars.

It's less than five per cent of the $6 billion Vineyard
housing market. It's only $6 million more than the recent $22
million sale of the former Sharpe house in Edgartown. It's but a
$233 contribution from each seasonal and year-round resident.