Policy

The rules of the game—and the attitudes of the players—have an enormous effect on community development work at all levels. Here we look at some of the conversations about how to shift that policy for the better.

Lessons from 20 Years of Enabling Tenants to Buy Their Buildings

As cities across the country consider giving tenants the right of first refusal, municipalities must be meticulous in crafting policies that preserve and expand tenants' ability to form housing cooperatives.

LIHTC Preservation and the Need for Rental Assistance

Many LIHTC developments and renters who live in them are struggling to pay the bills. Could rental assistance alleviate the burden for both?

Massachusetts Showed States How to Create an Eviction Ban. Now It’s Backpedaling

The Massachusetts eviction moratorium—one of the strongest in the nation—expired, just in time for winter. How did this happen?

Tobacco Causes Cancer. Can it Also Build Housing?

“Sin taxes” usually fund health and education programs. Will Colorado add housing to that list? And should they?

Outside Their Comfort Zone: Health Sector Players Speaking Up for Housing Policy Change

Even large health systems willing to finance housing can’t solve housing affordability by themselves; it will take policy change. Taking the plunge to lobbying for that change is still a big step, but when they do they get attention.

Q: Who Enforces CRA?

Why are there three different agencies enforcing the Community Reinvestment Act, or CRA? Who does each agency enforce it on?

We Need a Federal Housing Agency

Our politics have made an artificial divide between the public and the private sectors when it comes to housing. It’s time to do better.

Lasting Affordability Is the Path to Resilience

We now have a unique opportunity, generated by a combination of life-threatening conditions and focused political will stemming from the Black Lives Matter movement, to re-prioritize local housing policies and resources.
homeowners_foreclosure sign

Don’t Just Defer Loans—Start Modifying Loans Now

We have learned how to successfully provide broad-based mortgage payment relief to millions of American households in need. There’s nothing to stop us this time around from doing it right.
Rep. Ilhan Omar, who stands at a podium in front of an American flag, has proposed legislation that would cancel rents and individual mortgage payments nationwide to deal with the COVID-19 crisis.

Ilhan Omar Proposes Bill to Cancel Rent, Mortgage Payments During Pandemic

A bill announced today by Rep. Ilhan Omar would release tenants and homeowners from housing payments until the national emergency is lifted, and would make up the losses to landlords and lenders through a federal fund.
Vice President Joe Biden stands with a microphone in his hand in front of an American flag at an Iowa forum August 2019.

What Could a Joe Biden Presidency Accomplish on Affordable Housing?

Democratic presidential candidates made the housing crisis part of their platforms. What might a President Biden do to ease the shortage?
housing march

How Rent Control Promotes Racial Equity

Even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, our long-standing housing affordability crisis called for universal rent control as a baseline protection. 
small business close

Help for Small Businesses

What kinds of emergency measures are advocacy organizations proposing to make sure that when small businesses can open again, they’ll be financially able to do so?
HUD Secretary Ben Carson smiles as his folds his hands in front of his chest.

HUD Urged to Make Tenant Income Adjustments Automatic by April 1

Preventing catastrophe when eviction moratoriums lift requires reducing tenants' rent quickly—which advocates say is fully within HUD's power.
rural cooperative

We Need a Rural New Deal

COVID-19 is a combined health and economic crisis poised to further devastate rural communities already suffering severe economic stress. Already, rural health care systems...

What an Effective Eviction Moratorium Must Include

An eviction moratorium must hit all five phases of eviction to protect public health. Here's what's needed for an eviction halt policy to do its job.

Housing Policy Must Change in Wake of COVID-19

COVID-19 will hurt the low-income and housing insecure the most. We must act now to protect them—and ensure safe housing for all going forward. Here's how.

Reaching Out to Voters in the Justice System

Many people lose their right to vote while incarcerated and don’t regain it after their sentences are over. There are many more people involved in the justice system who can vote but don’t know it. Communities could increase their political power if they could reach these voters.
A multicolored tent in house's front yard. A sign on the fence says "Moratorium on foreclosures and evictions" and a sign on the house reads "Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign"

The Many Fronts of COVID-19 Related Housing Needs and Measures

Stable housing is crucial during a pandemic. Front-line providers and local governments are moving to address the impacts, but they need more federal funds
Close up of a typewriter with the word "Regulations" typed out

Business as Usual: Trump Agencies Resist Calls to Suspend Non-Essential Rulemaking

Congressional leaders and community advocates are calling on HUD and financial regulators to suspend non-essential rulemaking. HUD appears to refuse.