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View from the street of a bank built in 1917. From the photographer: The building features a red brick exterior with terra cotta trim, decorative panels with Sullivanesque detailing, Sullivanesque trim, a decorative mosaic in the tympanum below the arch above the front entrance with the word “Thrift” in gold lettering in the middle of an expanse of blue tile and decorative white, cream, green, purple, red, and orange tile accents, decorative metal lettering on the facade above the arch displaying the words “The People’s Federal Savings & Loan Assn." ... Gargoyles above the pilasters framing the front entrance, fixed glass windows at the corners, brass double doors.
Practitioner Voice

How the New CRA Rule Will Help, and Where It Falls Short

The assessments that evaluate a bank’s lending practices have improved, but there are several missed opportunities for reform. For one, the new rules won’t incorporate a racial analysis into lending examinations.

A collage of photos from stories that appeared on Shelterforce, with 2023 etched in the center.
Community Development Field

Shelterforce’s Top 10 Stories of 2023

What were the biggest Shelterforce stories of the year? We count down the top 10 of 2023.

multifamily buildings
Opinion

The FSS Program Was Expanded Beyond Public Housing Authorities—Here’s How It’s Going

In 2018, the Family Self-Sufficiency Program was expanded to privately owned properties receiving project-based rental assistance. Here’s a look at how early adopters have used the program to support residents, and the lessons they learned along the way.

A person in a blue jacket and blue shirt writes something down in a notebook. The person's head has been cropped out of the photo.
Opinion

Let’s Act Now to Stop Racism in Real Estate Appraisals

In 2022, a government task force released an action plan about combating bias in the appraisal industry. How can CDFIs fight back against the damage caused by under-appraisals?

Several people in winter clothing stand outdoors on a sunny day holding signs. At center, a light-skinned woman in late middle age holds a sign that says "Safe Homes for All," written in red paint. Other people, partly visible, hold printed signs calling for rent control. Behind the protesters are hemlock trees and beyond them, partly visible, are tall buildings.
Policy

‘Renters Are Struggling’: Economists Back Tenant-Led Push for Federal Rent Control

“We have seen corporate landlords—who own a larger share of the rental market than ever before—use inflation as an excuse to hike rents and reap excess profits beyond what should be considered fair and reasonable.”

Concrete steps on a gently sloping grassy hill go up three steps, then become discontinuous with the steps above them. They're somehow (it's not clear how) raised up, so that on the third step a walker would have to step down before going on to the next step up.
Reported Article

Poor by Design: SSI Asset Caps

Asset caps on SSI and other benefits keep people with disabilities from building up emergency savings and financial security—or buying a home.

A small, one-story, gray-shingled cottage with a red door and white trim, with overhanging trees on the left and right.
Reported Article

FHA Changes Could Make ADU Construction More Affordable

The Federal Housing Administration may soon allow homeowners to count projected rent toward their qualifying income to build an accessory dwelling unit. While ADU advocates call the change “monumental,” the proposed policy isn’t perfect.

A broadly smiling woman with dark skin and braids, wearing a black shirt with a green-leaf logo on it, stands in front of a medium-blue wall. A business name, The Olive Street Agency, with the green-leaf logo, is printed (or affixed) to the wall in white capital letters.
Opinion

CDFIs Shouldn’t Act Like Banks, But Too Often Do

When receiving bank funding, CDFIs often limit their investments in accordance with bank restrictions. How can reforms to the Community Reinvestment Act help center the needs of underserved communities?

Aerial view of brick three-story buildings in Philadelphia, in golden light, with a church tower in the distance. At top right, part of a big rainbow is visible
Opinion

Appraisal Bias Is the Fair Housing Issue of the Day

Newly released data on home appraisal practices is a step forward in the fight against racially biased appraisals. There’s still a long way to go.

Under a blue sky, in a large arching gateway is suspended a banner that reads "End Rent Burden." Below it is a line of 11 picketers holding signs that say "UAW on Strike: Unfair Labor Practice." A passerby is talking to one of the picketers.
Opinion

Tenants Rights Advance in California

Reaction to the housing crisis in California has led to a series of gains for tenants, including a new Renters’ Caucus.

A person holding eggs.
Opinion

Egg Prices and Rents—What Do They Have in Common?

Avian flu gave companies cover to price gouge. Could the attention to lack of housing supply do the same for landlords?

Aerial view of the KeyBank building at night. Windows in it and nearby buildings are lighted.
Reported Article

NCRC Claims KeyBank Broke Promises, Failed Black Homeowners

Who is responsible for evaluating whether groups adhere to promises made in a community benefits agreement (CBA)? Is there any recourse for those who don’t get what they were promised? And what lessons can we take away from the KeyBank CBA?