Affordable housing

An Affordable Housing Movement Is Rising from the Wreckage of the Foreclosure Crisis

In late September, activists staged actions in 45 cities to draw attention to predatory rent practices and vast cuts to Housing and Urban Development funding. “Renters Week of Action” was partially inspired by a report put out by the Right to the City Alliance (RTC) highlighting solutions to the problems tenants now face after the foreclosure crisis.

“The majority of all renters pay an unaffordable rent,” Darnell Johnson of RTC told In These Times. “Eviction, rising rents and gentrification are racial, gender and economic violence harming our people.”

San Diego's Failure to Get Up To Speed is Literally Killing San Diegans

Another proposed solution is for the city to seek grant opportunities for new housing development. But the City Council is not running a small local nonprofit organization reliant on grant funding. The City Council is responsible for the sixth largest city in the U.S., with the fourth largest homeless population. The fact that the City Council proposes grants as a solution to the affordable housing crisis is concerning, given the severity of our housing and homelessness crisis.

Bay Area Rents Still a Struggle for Residents

Nearly half the renters in the Bay Area struggle to meet high housing costs, despite an influx of wealthier workers into the market, a new survey found.

A study by Apartment List, a rental website, found nearly 1 in 4 renters in San Jose, San Francisco, Oakland and surrounding areas were severely cost burdened, spending more than half of their income on rent. About half of Bay Area renters are considered economically burdened, spending over 30 percent of their paychecks on shelter.

Through Fannie Mae, US Taxpayers Provide Backing for Some Rental Home Giants

Some renters of homes owned by the “billion-dollar landlords” highlighted in an ABC News investigation might be surprised to learn that they, as taxpayers, have a stake in their corporate landlord’s business.

That’s because of a new initiative by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), in which Fannie Mae guarantees mortgage-backed securities on rental homes. (Fannie Mae, along with Freddie Mac, is a government-sponsored enterprise that securitizes mortgages, allowing private lenders to put more of their money back into lending.)

Republican Tax Plan Could Grind Affordable Housing Construction to a Virtual Halt

The tax plan proposed by Congressional Republicans will likely decimate production of new affordable rental housing, even as housing shortages across the country are driving rents higher and taking ever-larger shares of Americans’ incomes.

The plan released last week by the House Ways and Means Committee preserves a well-regarded program called the Low Income Housing Tax Credit — but effectively guts it. That’s because about half of all low-income housing credit development is done in conjunction with private activity bonds, a financing method that the plan scraps.

Trump, GOP Set to Worsen Housing Crisis

Federal Cuts Undermine Local Efforts

It’s only been two months since California passed fifteen housing bills to address its affordable housing crisis, and the federal government is again up to its old tricks. The GOP tax bill reduces investment in affordable housing by $22 billion, while the massive cuts in HUD funding remain part of the budget proposal.

We have seen this scenario before.

Federal Housing Assistance Mostly Helps the Wealthy--And GOP Tax Reform Would Make It Worse

President Donald Trump and the Republican Party, which controls both houses of Congress, are pushing their agenda of massive tax cuts for the wealthy. This comes at a time when most Americans are living in or near poverty and housing is increasingly expensive. One regressive policy that is being revisited is the mortgage interest deduction (MID). The MID is a tax benefit that benefits rich, predominantly white, households and does not benefit lower-income, rent-burdened households.

Vallejo Area Experiencing Some Gentrification, Study Finds

A new study suggests lower-income renters in Vallejo are being replaced by higher-income ones.

The Apartment List study finds that more than half of Vallejo renters spend more than 30 percent of their income on housing. This is significantly fewer than just a few years ago, indicating that the area’s economic demographics may be changing.

“As the U.S. renter population nears 44 million households — or 37 percent of U.S. households — and rents increase nationwide, rental affordability remains an important concern,” according to the latest Apartment List report.

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