Blog

The Shelterforce blog (formerly known as Rooflines) is a forum for voices in the community development, affordable housing, community organizing, neighborhood revitalization, and related fields to challenge each other and other stakeholders; share ideas, successes, and failures; and pose questions to one another. Learn how you or your organization can submit a post.

Questioning the Bailout

In the forthcoming issue of Shelterforce is an item about Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren, chair of the oversight panel formed to monitor the...

HUD: Minorities Shown Fewer Homes, Apartments Than Whites

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development earlier this month released its report on Housing Discrimination Against Racial...

The Potential for Affordability

The other day a genteel old six-bedroom house at the end of my street went up for auction. It...

“Let’s Refuel America”

According to a report in The New York Times Monday, auto sales are down by more than a million compared to 2007’s 16.2 million...

No, Minimum Rents Do Not “Encourage Financial Responsibility”

President Obama's 2015 Budget seeks to impose a $50 per month minimum rent on tenants living in USDA Rural...

The Costs of “Moving On”

In his recent New York Times op-ed, American Enterprise Institute president Arthur C. Brooks says declining mobility is a...

Yes, Virginia, There Is A City Planner

Sometimes, the road more traveled by makes all the difference. It’s not news that there is significant...

The Trailer Park as Affordable Urban Housing?

Where I grew up, a lot of people lived in mobile homes, as a way to enter the housing market at an affordable price....

The Road Less Traveled: Funding a Land Trust with NSP

In Delaware, a partnership with Diamond State CLT let Kent County leverage NSP money it wasn't originally sure it had the capacity to use at all into permanently affordable housing.

Joint Center’s Housing Report Points to Challenges Ahead

Describing the problems facing the housing market today as “hard to overstate,” representatives from Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies last week announced the...

Moving Hospital and Health System Investments Upstream

Across the country, nonprofit hospitals are under intense scrutiny due to the discrepancy between the substantial revenues they generate compared to the level of...
new york city skyline

The Fight for Stronger Rent Regulation in New York Is Beginning

New York’s rent regulation laws, which protect over 1 million renter households in New York City and Westchester, Nassau, and Rockland counties, are up for renewal this year.

FHFA: Orphaned No More

Since being taken into conservatorship, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two U.S. housing mortgage giants, have been treated as unwanted orphans. The massive...

Criminalizing Homelessness

Last week, when we asked if homelessness should be a more prominent Occupy Wall Street issue, we pointed to an article by author Barbara...

What’s the Take-Away of the Jim Johnson Saga?

So James A. Johnson has resigned from Barack Obama’s vice president search committee in the aftermath of the Wall Street Journal’s revelations that Johnson,...

Will the Occupy Wall Street Crackdowns Energize or Deflate the Movement?

Last week we asked you how the widespread crackdowns on the Occupy Wall Street protests would affect the movement. More...

Why Conservatives Can’t Afford a Real Government Shutdown

It’s conventional wisdom that voters will mostly blame House Republicans if the federal government shuts down over their effort...

As Housing Program Moves Poor to the Suburbs, Do Tensions Follow?

Friday’s New York Times article on Section 8 households in Antioch, Calif., has attracted a great deal of attention. I couldn’t wait to read...

You Must Remember This: Uses of the Past in Community Development

“History is bunk,” declared Henry Ford to a newspaper reporter in 1916.  “The only history that is worth a tinker’s...
Close-up of the back of a t-shirt that says "Because the rent won't wait."

Renter Week of Action in Pictures

This past week, renter advocacy groups staged coordinated demonstrations in over 45 states to disrupt business as usual, including stand-ins at the personal residences of corporate landlords, banner drops, neighborhood tours of the housing crisis, and creative actions at city halls. With the help of #RenterWeekofAction convener Right to the City, Shelterforce has compiled photos from several such demonstrations throughout the country to highlight their scope.