A pair of hands hold a small cutout of a wood house.

2023 Study Results

What we know from a statewide study of homelessness in Minnesota


The most recent Minnesota Homeless Study was completed on October 26, 2023, through face-to-face interviews with Minnesotans experiencing homelessness and a statewide count.


10,522 people were experiencing homelessness in Minnesota on a single night in 2023.

Download the Single Night Count of People Experiencing Homelessness fact sheet
A trendline shows the number of people counted on a single night during the Minnesota Homeless Study from 1991-2023. In 2023, 10,522 people experienced homelessness on a single night.
  • Overall, 10,522 represents a decrease of 7% since the 2018 study.
  • It is important to note that this decrease masks year-over-year fluctuations in homelessness, particularly due to the COVID-19 pandemic and unprecedented funding in rental and housing assistance.

Fewer children and youth are experiencing homelessness. However, the number of older adults (age 55+) experiencing homelessness has increased.

  • Since 2018, there was a 19% decrease in the number of children homeless with their parents. 
  • There was a 17% decrease in the number of homeless youth (age 24 and younger) on their own without their parents. 
  • Older adults (age 55+) were the only age group that saw an increase over 2018 (7%).

Children and youth make up a sizeable proportion of the homeless population.

  • Together, children and youth (age 24 and younger) account for 4 out of every 10 people experiencing homelessness.
  • The age distribution of people experiencing homelessness is similar for the 7-county metro, greater Minnesota, and participating Reservations.
  • Children, youth, and adults under age 55 are disproportionally affected by homelessness (relative to their population in Minnesota). 
  • Although older adults are a growing group of people experiencing homelessness, they are still least likely to be homeless compared to their numbers in the overall population of Minnesotans.

Families make up nearly half of Minnesota’s homeless population.

  • People in families (with children under 18) account for 47% of people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota.
  • The proportion of families is slightly higher in the Twin Cities metro (48%) than it is in greater Minnesota (41%)

Across the state, one-third of people experiencing homelessness are not in a formal shelter.

It is impossible to identify all people experiencing homelessness who are not in a formal shelter. These numbers can be affected by variations in outreach efforts and the visibility of the population.

  • Overall, 33% of people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota are not in a formal shelter. There was a smaller proportion of people not in formal shelter in the Twin Cities metro (18%), compared to greater Minnesota (32%) and participating reservations (95%) where there are fewer shelters available. 

Download the fact sheet for additional findings and an explanation of the data.

What comes next?

Beginning in May 2024, Wilder will report findings from thousands of face-to-face interviews conducted throughout Minnesota, plus:

  • Data tables for each interview question, for every region of the state
  • Findings from the Reservation Homeless Study
  • Total single-night estimates of Minnesota’s homeless population will be reported later in 2024
  • Specialized briefings on smaller sub-groups such as homeless youth, Veterans, older adults, families, and long-term homeless populations