Housing

Housing matters. A stable, quality, affordable home is a foundation for so many other parts of life. How do we bring it in reach for everyone?

Something Old, Something New: Biden’s Housing Plan

President Biden’s Housing Supply Action Plan is a catchall of existing proposals, tiny tweaks, and things Congress would have to fund—plus a few genuinely interesting administrative moves. Here’s the rundown.

Helping Tenants with Mental Health Challenges Who Are at Risk of Eviction

Support at all stages of an eviction could help vulnerable tenants navigate the process, avoid being removed from their home, or if they are evicted, help them catch their footing.
A large affordable housing development with a large mural that includes Black musicians on the front wall.

Two Paths to Density: Profit vs People

As communities across the country begin promoting density to address the affordable housing crisis, they must grapple with how that housing will be built, and for whom.

Getting Medicaid to Pay for Pest Control

For children who have asthma, pests like cockroaches and mice can trigger allergic reactions and lead to recurring and expensive hospital visits. Could insurers save money by investing in housing-based improvements like pest management services?

Restorative Housing Policy: Can We Heal the Wounds of Redlining and Urban Renewal?

Our fair housing laws enshrine an approach that prohibits us from explicitly referring to race, even in programs intended to undo the harm caused by racism. Now restorative housing policy is attempting to directly confront this history.
A construction worker cuts a piece of wood in front of a house.

Leaky Roof? A USDA Home Repair Option

One USDA program has given out over a billion dollars in rural home repair grants since its inception, and could be inspiration for similar programs in urban and suburban communities as well.

Vacant Homes Wither Under Flawed Tax Sale System

Outdated tax sale rules and predatory investment practices keep Baltimore homes in a revolving door of vacancy. But that could soon change.

Tenant Rights in Our Backyard—A Panel Discussion

Tenant activists discuss how the housing movement can do better at aligning itself with the tenants' rights movement.

Affordable ADUs: How It’s Being Done

In the face of limited financing options, local governments, nonprofits, and social enterprises are experimenting with ways to make affordable ADUs a reality.

Are Urban Planners Staying Silent on Climate Gentrification?

Holmdel, New Jersey, moved its affordable housing to flood-prone land, raising a question about planners' ethical obligations to speak up against such moves.

ADUs: Defined, Disambiguated, and Debated

Accessory dwelling units are being touted as a way to provide more affordable rental units for tenants, and additional monthly income for homeowners. But some cities allow them, others don’t. So what are ADUs exactly?

How Tax Assessments are Racist

Between biased property appraisals that undervalue Black-owned properties and biased tax assessments that levy an unfair burden, homeowners of color are flanked by a double-whammy of racism.
A glass door etched with a logo that reads "U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development" in black. Changes HUD implemented in 2013 have made it harder for community housing development organizations, or CHDOs, to receive housing funds.

How an Obscure HUD Definition Is Leaving Housing Dollars Unspent

Agencies are required to set aside a percentage of their HOME grants for projects led by community housing development organizations. But changes HUD implemented in 2013 have made it harder for nonprofits to receive those funds.

Putting in the Labor to Support Affordable Homes

With notoriously high housing costs in San Francisco pushing workers across occupations out of the city and into long commutes, the value of alliances between housing advocates and labor organizers are becoming increasingly clear.

Making Affordable Housing Easier to Find

We talk a lot about needing more affordable housing—but the affordable units that do exist can be very hard to locate, which hampers fair housing.

Backsliding Support and Backfiring Messaging: The Homelessness Conversation Needs a Reframe

Research shows that common messages supporting permanent solutions to homelessness are not working. But there are other ways to frame the discussion.

Eviction Reduction Should Be an Explicit Goal of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit...

The largest source of subsidy for building affordable housing doesn’t come with meaningful eviction reduction requirements, or even incentives. But it could.

Push Back on the Racial Wealth Gap—A Shelterforce Webinar

Authors from Shelterforce’s recent series about the racial wealth gap and other experts talk wealth building, wealth extraction, and the tools available to help close the gap.

Mattye Berry-Evans, a Member of the Resident Action Network

“Each and every person should have the opportunity to have safe, secure, adequate, and affordable housing. I wasn't able to have it, but I can help others have it.”

How Hidden Property Owners and Bad Landlord Patterns Are Revealed in NYC

Housing tools in New York City demystify building ownership information and help renters, policymakers, and housing advocates spot and address problematic landlord behavior. Could tech-savvy groups outside The Big Apple replicate these tools in their communities?