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?

MacArthur Foundation Announces Multi-State Affordable Housing Preservation Effort

The following was released Thursday by the MacArthur Foundation. Seizing the opportunity to make needed long-term investments in the face of a weak economy, 12 states and cities are launching innovative projects to preserve more...

Rethinking Home Mortgage Deductions

Harvard economics Professor Edward Glaeser, in The New York Times this week, asks us to rethink the home mortgage deduction in the tax code, and it certainly sounds like a good idea. In hard economic...

Worse Than a Tornado: Neighborhood Stabilization Amid the Foreclosure Crisis

NHI’s David Sailer appeared in the February 2009 issue of Planning magazine to address “the insidious destruction of entire neighborhoods now goes largely unnoticed.” With few exceptions, he says, “we allow thousands of properties...

The Obama Housing Plan: Bold and Sensible, But Gaps Remain

There is much that is praiseworthy about the President Obama’s Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan. It is an intelligent plan that recognizes the seriousness of the housing crisis and the need to restore confidence...

Does Obama’s Plan Go Far Enough?

Barack Obama’s announcement this week outlining $75 billion in direct funding to help homeowners stay in their homes, and up to $200 billion designed to allow for the government-controlled mortgage industries, Fannie Mae and...

Obama’s Foreclosure Plan: Just the Facts

The Obama administration announced February 18 its Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan that aims to offer assistance to as many as 9 million homeowners making a “good-faith effort to stay current on their mortgage...

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. Still do. And now there is some fascinating new...

CDCs Must Recognize Changing Conditions

It was announced this week that new home sales dropped 15 percent in December. This follows a year of similar news. Earlier in the week everyone was pleasantly surprised by sales of existing homes,...

A Sobering Economic Roundup

It was quite a day today: American Express Earnings Drop 79 Percent Sprint Nextel to Cut 8,000 Positions Caterpillar to Cut 20,000 Jobs Home Depot to Cut 7,000 Jobs And the grand finale: 62,000 Jobs Are Cut by U.S....

Foreclosure Mitigation, Abandoned Properties, What’s Missing?

At an upcoming housing summit in New Jersey, there are promising presentations for anyone who sees the grave danger associated with the foreclosure crisis and the subsequent effects on neighborhoods, but does it go...

Keep Single Family Homes in Mind

I enjoyed looking at the examples of smart growth in NRDC’s new online feature, Picturing Smart Growth. Thanks to Kaid Benfield for bringing this great resource to everyone’s attention! I was pleased to see...

It’s a Dirty Job…

For the first 38 minutes, it almost sounded like the Senators pitied him. The Senate’s Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs spent nearly 40 minutes of the two-hour confirmation hearing warning President-elect Obama’s HUD...

Disasters in Tough Times

The other day the brakes went out on a fire truck as it drove down a steep side street in a Boston neighborhood. The truck careened across a busy street and smashed into an...

Considering the Townhouse

Driving along I-95 from Virginia to New England, I noticed how many townhouse-style developments have cropped up where apartment complexes would have been built a decade ago. Here is an example of the demand...

Rethinking the Rescue

This time of economic uncertainty presents an opportunity for the community development movement to reinvent itself.

The Housing Change We Need

The foreclosure crisis has pushed the envelope so far, it's left an opening where we can start building a real national housing policy.

A Few Slightly Radical Ideas to Ponder

Here’s a handful of somewhat radical planning ideas to ponder as we enter the Great Mini-Depression: I am wondering what sort of innovations will go mainstream in this strange new age. General Motors is busy...

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 federal bailout for the ailing economy, and her conclusion that...

Density Revisited

This past summer, I wrote a feature for Shelterforce about a community where a CDC was battling a NIMBY mentality. The CDC was trying to build neighborhood support for over a hundred units of...

Foreclosure Nightmare Continues for “Famous” Chicago Renters

Esteban Cruz digs his hands into a big plastic tub of letters and documents bundled and labeled by month. This mass of paper represents the past year the tenants of his building in Chicago’s...

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