NIMBYs, YIMBYs, PHIMBYs-Oh My! | Can Algorithms Make Equitable Cities? | Retail Segregation Takes a Toll | E.R. Visits and "Tough" Neighborhoods | Enough Innovation Already | More...
An interview with Ryan Cooper, co-author of the report (with Peter Gowan), Social Housing in the United States, about current approaches to government intervention in the rental market, the politics of home ownership, why public housing needs to be mixed-income, and envisioning a society that provides adequate, affordable housing to all of its citizens.
A Cleveland neighborhood made famous as an epicenter of the foreclosure crisis works its way back to stability. Here’s how.
Really, YIMBYs? | TOD Without Displacement | Tracking 80 Million Evictions | MLK's Campaign, Revitalized | Airbnb Hastening Demise of NOLA Culture? | Bike "Borrowing" for Equity | More
Why would there be a need for a marketplace that values health? The answer is simple: our current “investments” in health are not working.
In honor of the 50th anniversary of the passage of the federal Fair Housing Act, HUD Secretary Ben Carson is doing all he can to undermine its mission.
It's not too late for cities competing to be the next home to Amazon to raise the issue of employer-assisted workforce housing.
Gentrification Is Bad For One's Health | Housing Teachers-At School | Protecting Space for Local Business | TOD Doesn't Have to Displace | Community Artists Win in Court | More . . .
A Portland policy gives priority for housing funded by the city’s housing bureau to residents who were displaced, are at risk of displacement, or are the descendants of families who were displaced due to urban renewal in North and Northeast Portland neighborhoods.
Whenever you hear (or read) anti-rent control arguments, ask the question: who benefits from banning rent control? And who is hurt?
Shelterforce took the occasion of Michael Bodaken's retiring from the National Housing Trust to speak with him about how he got into housing, some of his favorite projects, and his recommendations for the field going forward.
A university study on rent control makes three crucial mistakes in its assessment of the policy's effect on San Francisco's housing market. Housing advocacy organization Tenants Together sets the record straight on rent control's role, and who is actually to blame for the city's unaffordability.
Why are nuisance ordinances proliferating nationwide, and who is disproportionately affected?
A new funding collaborative, Funders for Housing and Opportunity, has just launched. The collaborative, officially a project of the New Ventures Fund, involves (so far) nine large and well-known foundations.
Though much fanfare is showered on the CLT model, land trusts often struggle to get off the ground because very little support is available for those trying to create one or for existing CLTs looking to expand.
Bank-seized properties in these communities of color have higher rates of neglect, and the situation has prompted a lawsuit.
Methods from a successful organizing campaign from the past can inform the basis of a new electoral constituency around housing.
HMDA is the key to preventing predatory behavior, not the cause of it, so how can an economics professor from George Washington University claim that HMDA can facilitate large-scale identity theft?
How tenant and rent protections failed the residents of eight rent-stabilized buildings in Queens.
Offering on-site health care in housing developments makes sense. But developing and managing housing and health care facilities can be very different. How do you make them work together?
In Pittsburgh, hundreds of Penn Plaza residents were given 90-day eviction notices after their building was slated for demolition. The mass eviction was well known throughout Pittsburgh, but few knew what was happening inside the building.
Housing managers and health providers are natural partners for health care programming, but misunderstandings and institutional mismatches can get in the way.
With funds from a settlement between the New York State Attorney General and major banks, 76 New York state municipalities are working to get abandoned and deteriorating homes back into productive use.
Perhaps publicly owned land should be developed for the community first—and market-rate developers should be asking us for access to part of it.
Shared equity homeownership programs just had a big win.
Oft-cited study concerns 1990s renters already paying huge portions of their income on housing.
It was only two and a half years ago that Jake Blumgart opened his article, "In Defense of Rent Control," by saying: "Rent control...
East New York has historically been one of the most affordable neighborhoods in New York City. But an influx of wealthier newcomers and rising prices citywide is beginning to change that.
Private developers and public agencies are finally investing in neighborhoods near transit and jobs—where many low-income communities of color have lived for generations—and as a result, are being pushed out just as resources in their neighborhoods are increasing.
Now that the 2017 election season has concluded, here is a recap of their outcomes, and where affordable housing policy could go in some cities.
Adding housing doesn't correlate with increased school enrollment, according to a new study. But will housing advocates be able to make use of this information?
It’s time for more states to do what it takes to pass enabling legislation for inclusionary housing, adding this valuable policy tool to the fight for more affordable housing opportunities.
The discourse around proposed changes to the federal tax system, especially between talk show pundits and economists and politicians—each with their own allegiances—is devoid...
A: No! Despite common fears, decades of evidence shows that rent regulation doesn't restrict housing supply and quality. Feel free to print and distribute! Click...
After the housing crash, Chicago’s 1- to 4-unit rentals weren’t bouncing back in many neighborhoods. Three CDFIs came together to make it happen.
Demolition can generate emotional reactions, especially in places with a history of urban renewal. But critics of demolishing any vacant homes are ignoring the evidence.
No longer an issue that’s hard to rally people around, affordable housing—especially inclusionary housing—is getting talked about in local elections across the country.
In Philadelphia, health care professionals and housing advocates are working together to deliver home repairs to low-income homeowners.
Rapid re-housing, originally a strategy to prevent homelessness for households experiencing a temporary financial crisis, is now being promoted widely as a broad solution. But in a high-cost area, it's possible it might do more harm than good.
How do social justice, organizing, and mental health interact? Shelterforce chats with clinical social worker Dawn Belkin Martinez to find out.
Imagine if hosting a transitional tiny home village became the norm for all suitable vacant land—dare I say even an expectation?
Today, America is a place where symbols are often more important than the causes or deeds they describe. With social media and the 24-hour...
If we are truly going to reduce our housing policy objectives to the realm of goals related to “opportunity,” I would like to offer some guidelines for its proper use.
New York seems poised to move the concept of community land trusts in new and exciting directions.
Here's something we don't talk about enough: developing affordable housing in a tight, high-cost market also increases overall affordability through filtering! Just in the other direction—it trickles up.
“The string of victories in 2017 are a direct product of renters building power on the ground. Renters, faced with a historic housing crisis, are getting organized to change immediate conditions on the ground and build a movement to transform the way land and housing are treated in the country.”
For the past two years I’ve worked as a housing lottery project manager for a small affordable housing developer and have found that, in spite of De Blasio’s bold initiative, the program often fails to efficiently and adequately serve the very people for which it has been designed.
After years-long notice and comment periods, a final rule on using small area Fair Market Rents to determine housing choice voucher payment levels was supposed to take effect. However, the Trump administration has recently announced a two-year suspension of the rule.
When families have stable housing, the benefits are widespread. And perhaps that has been the problem.
If you own and/or manage affordable housing, do you know what to do if ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) shows up on your doorstep looking for someone? If you haven’t thought it through yet, now’s the time.
In Minnesota, ten mobile home communities have closed in the past twenty-five years, and no new ones have opened. This uncertainty affects nearly 3 million Americans who are residents in the nation’s 50,000 manufactured housing communities. While most of these homeowners own their own homes, they rent the land, leaving them vulnerable to dramatic rent increases, arbitrary rules, and even eviction.
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.
If expanding access to homeownership can reverse the trends of growing racial wealth inequality, why are we seeing so many states roll back the supports that make homeownership possible?
More than 60 Miami families, many undocumented, have been homeless since last week’s hurricane and were forcibly removed last night by local officials.
Amid a housing crisis in California, legislators last week approved a historic package of bills that will shape the future of housing policy in...
We need to talk about inclusionary housing in a different way that circumvents common misperceptions and creates a new narrative for policymakers in moderate markets and more conservative political climates. Here are 10 messages to help frame your conversations.
If we built enough housing, we would still need subsidized housing for many people, but market prices would be low enough that most people could afford them. But we’ve chosen not to. And the reason we give for that choice, more than any other, is that we are trying to preserve or improve the character of our communities.
Last year, Philadelphia was one of the first cohorts to go through the AFFH process, a fair housing assessment mandated by HUD to discover...
Sustainable for Whom? Large-Scale Sustainable Urban Development Projects and “Environmental Gentrification”
Absent a fundamentally new approach to redevelopment planning that places housing affordability at the center of the process, large-scale sustainable development projects are likely to become engines of what has been termed “environmental gentrification.”
Artists have left their mark on Station North and paved the way for an arts district, but the organically-developed communal live/work spaces that play such a vital role in helping make Baltimore an arts mecca are an endangered species.
A conversation with three county supervisors who were instrumental in moving affordable housing ballot measures forward in the California Bay Area by bringing in the health factor.
There have been a number of stories in the papers over the last two months that, from my perspective, are connected. Unfortunately, their common denominator is the demise of affordable housing caused by the malignant neglect of government at all levels.
There was much speculation last year about whether and how Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg would enter the affordable housing space. We got our first peek today . . .
Every month millions of Black Americans hand over half of our livelihood to the descendants of those who forcefully brought our ancestors here to work for free. Essentially, America is in the business of charging its captives rent.
Improving the well-being of homeless children and their families led Enterprise Community Partners, Citizens’ Committee for Children of New York, and New Destiny Housing to convene a Family Homelessness Task Force comprised of over 40 organizations.
Shelterforce recently spoke with Angela Mingo of Nationwide Children’s Hospital and the Rev. John Edgar of Community Development for All People to learn more about their health/housing partnership and how it came to be.
After seven years of advocacy from housing activists, the city of Seattle unanimously passed an ordinance permitting tent encampments or tiny house villages on city-owned or private property.
Affordable housing programs are at great risk of elimination under the current administration. In this uncertain climate, what can we learn from a program that leveraged private interest while aspiring to be a protector of affordable housing?
These ideas aren’t new, but pulling them together in a collective, coherent way will push back against those who, like their predecessors of 80, 70, 60 and 50 years ago, would deny long-term stability to those for reasons more than just the color of their money.
A recent examination by New Jersey Future has found that strategic changes in the way federal funds are allocated for affordable housing in the state have meant that many more affordable housing projects have been directed away from high-poverty neighborhoods and toward areas that offer greater economic opportunity.
The Bay Area can benefit from a clearer framework for understanding what the housing needs of our region actually are and evaluating how housing production is meeting those needs. A Jobs-Housing Fit is that framework.
California lawmakers consider devoting an additional $90 million to subsidize rent for homeless patients.
The “proposed” cuts to federal spending on affordable housing programs have become promises in the weeks since preliminary FY18 budgets were presented in March....
We need some standards to explain what “enough” means. Here's a breakdown of the Family Budget Calculator, the Self-Sufficiency Standard, and the Housing Poverty Measure.
Some community development organizations think the foreclosure crisis is over, but there’s a new emergency within the more vulnerable segments of our population—and it is hitting the elderly particularly hard, says Lou Tisler, who recently left Neighborhood Housing Services (NHS) of Greater Cleveland after 12 years as executive director. That new crisis is tax foreclosures—the sale of a property due to unpaid tax liabilities.
San Francisco Bay Area voters approved bold new investments in 2016 after housing advocates--part of the Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California--ignited a successful electoral strategy for the general election. Here's how it worked.
Community development corporations and affordable housing developers have an opportunity to prevent displacement, preserve affordability, and improve the habitability of neglected housing.
Federal programs and cultural attitudes that helped launch a majority of the large limited-equity co-ops across the nation are long gone, but at a smaller scale, this model of resident-controlled, long-term affordable housing may be experiencing new interest.
In the new administration, housing programs will feel the pressure of budgetary cuts and tax reform. Advocates should be careful not to put down other programs in the process of defending their own, or everyone will lose.
Deep-income targeting, where the focus is on housing those with the lowest incomes, can mean dramatically different things to affordable rental housing developers in different states, and even in different market areas within the same state.
AMI is typically used to determine whether a person is eligible for housing assistance. But in a large and wealthy area like the New York City metro, the resulting definitions of “low income” are often skewed, leaving out those who really need the help.
The 30 percent standard only ‘works’ in calculations where it is irrelevant. The residual-income approach, on the other hand, can turn what all too often becomes an abstract and theoretical discussion into a series of researchable questions.
Measuring only for cost burden overstates the housing needs of higher-income people and understates the extreme need at the lower end.
At an individual level, the 30 percent standard and the residual-income standard can produce very different results. But as a regional measure of affordability problems, they’re not so far apart.
Using a simple cost-to-income ratio to measure affordability doesn’t give us a good picture of who is really burdened by housing cost. We need a different approach.
The simplicity of the 30 percent standard is also its downfall. We don’t expect people of differing incomes or family sizes to pay the same percentage of their income in taxes—why would the same percentage work for housing costs?
In the Spring 2017 issue of Shelterforce, we talk about something that comes up daily for many people working in the community development field—what does housing affordability mean? Crafting practical policies to back up our vision requires that we be thoughtful about all of the pieces.
If you live anywhere with a substantial resistance to the current administration's attacks on immigrants, you may have seen...
We gathered some people who have done a lot of thinking and studying on regulation to discuss what it might look like to actually remove obstacles that get in the way of developing less expensive housing options responsibly. What's possible? What are the trade-offs?
In the aftermath of the 2016 U.S. elections, communities throughout the United States began experiencing a new wave of civic participation, organizing, and activism....
California is home to over 16 million renters— about 45 percent of the population—and the majority are low-income people...
Earlier today, the U.S. Senate advanced Ben Carson's nomination to lead the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development...
It is often convenient to blame city planners for the affordable housing crisis. Sadly, this blame is often misguided because planners do not produce housing.
In a previous Shelterforce blog post, I argued that we cannot give up hope that the market will build middle-income housing. Granted, over the past...
Should ground-floor use go from retail to housing? In San Francisco, the closing of once-popular San Francisco restaurants and the decline of...
Right around the New Year, an article by Wired’s Emily Dreyfuss popped up on one of my newsfeeds titled,...
I’ve read far too many think pieces, op-eds, and reports that neglect the role of tenant protections as a...
The 115th Congress has just gotten underway and already several of its members have launched an attack on some...
Overall, Houston, Texas, is one of the most statistically diverse cities in the country. But at the neighborhood level,...
The Obama administration’s revised Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule has recently come under fire—again—by the new administration. Attacks...