Sources for Section 8 Resource Materials

Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation 1325 G, NW, Ste. 800   Washington, DC  20005   202-376-2400 National Low Income Housing Coalition 1012 Fourteenth St., N.W. #1200 Washington, DC  20005 202-662-1530 Local Initiatives Support Corporation 733 Third Avenue New York, NY  10017 212-455-9800 The Enterprise Foundation American City Building 10227 Wincopin Circle, Ste. 500 Columbia, […]


For three years, the President, HUD, and the House of Representatives have taken steps to defund the Low Income Housing Preservation and Resident Homeownership Act (also known as Title VI or LIHPRHA), yet the program has received over one billion dollars in funding during that time, thanks to bi-partisan support from the Senate. Similar efforts […]

Mike McKee on Winning the Rent Control Battle

In June, New York State legislators passed legislation extending the state’s rent protection laws [see full article]. The New York State Tenants and Neighbors Coalition (NYSTNC) played a key role in the battle to renew the laws. Michael McKee, policy director for NYSTNC, served as its rent law campaign manager. A founder of the Coalition in […]

National Alliance of HUD Tenants:

In Mid-June, Mary Yeaton, a tenant activist from Boston, testified before the Senate on the Multifamily Assisted Housing Reform Bill (S. 513). Yeaton lives at the Charlesbank Apartments in Boston, one of only two resident-owned buildings purchased through the Hope II program. Her testimony was a change from past congressional hearings on housing, when advocates […]

I’m a Tenant and I Vote!

New York’s Republican legislators learned a lesson in June: Hell hath no fury like a New York City tenant scorned. Just when it seemed that rent regulations, which have protected New Yorkers from rent gouging and other landlord abuses since WWII, were going the way of the Brooklyn Dodgers, a tenant movement struck enough fear […]

Victories For Tenants

As you read this, Congress will have returned from its summer recess. With the budget behind them, they should be ready to tackle, among other unresolved legislation, the bills that propose massive changes to public housing and Section 8. Together these programs directly affect the lives of 4.5 million households and represent the bulk of […]

Rent Control Post Mortem

Immediately after a 1994 statewide referendum ended rent control in Massachusetts, a tenants’ organization known as Eviction Free Zone (“EFZ”), sponsored in part by Cambridge’s anti-poverty agency, began a campaign to preserve affordable housing. Relying on tenant outrage at the loss of rent control and a resurgence of activism, EFZ sought to bring together tenants […]

Shelter Shorts

Senate Takes Aim at Income Targeting Eager to get started on summer recess, the Senate tabled discussion on the Public Housing Reform and Responsibility Act of 1997 (S.462) until September. Awaiting Senators is a series of disputes, which threaten the bill’s passage altogether. The most prominent issue of debate concerns “income targeting,” reserving spaces in […]

A Withering Commitment

The federal government has never had a strong commitment to housing for low-income Americans. The recent history of national housing policy sheds light on today’s rush to remove government from housing altogether. Over the past 23 years, the Section 8 program’s project- and tenant-based subsidies have helped provide housing to millions of Americans. As Congress […]

Schmoozing 102: How to Meet Foundation Officers

In Schmoozing 101, in the last issue of Shelterforce, we discussed the value of developing strong, healthy relationships with grantmakers. Before turning to specific ways to meet foundation officers, here are five points to remember. 1. All grantmakers are unique – it’s not a standard process. 2. Treat foundation officers as peers. Get off your […]

Up for Grabs: Congress to Decide on Section 8 Expirations

Over the past few months, considerable attention of housing advocates, policymakers and, yes, even the media, has been focused on the enormous budget problem facing HUD in Fiscal Year 1998, starting October 1. HUD Secretary Andrew Cuomo has called this problem of securing adequate budget authority for Section 8 renewals the “greatest crisis in HUD’s […]

CDCs and Section 8:

Although the exact changes in project-based Section 8 programs haven’t yet been determined, change is coming, and it will not only affect present owners and managers of this housing, but will influence whether or not community development corporations (CDCs) should get more involved in acquiring and preserving this stock. While not on a massive scale, […]

A Historic Opportunity

As a resident of Lake June Village Apartments, a 221(d)3 property in Dallas, Texas, and representative of NAHT member organizations in Region VI, I am one of 2.1 million lower income families served by HUD’s multifamily portfolio. While advocates do a fine job in working with us, tenants need to speak for ourselves to make […]

Portfolio Reengineering: The Nonprofit Role

Over 500,000 units of HUD multifamily assisted housing have rents that are “out of whack” – that is, higher than market rent, according to HUD’s estimates. While many owners may not participate in HUD’s portfolio reengineering, as many as 100,000 units may be “restructured” between now and 2004. The unpaid principal balance on these units […]

The Other Section 8 Program

Addressing the housing needs of very low-income people requires many tools. One tool worth better understanding is the voucher and certificate program. The program serves more than 1.4 million households, 67 percent of which are families with children. The median income for households with certificates is $6,900, $7,200 for those with vouchers. Three out of […]

Investing in Human Capital

Q: In a country as affluent as the United States, why does a woman disabled by schizophrenia have to live in an alley? A: Because there are so few housing subsidies that only 36 percent of the disabled have access to them. Q: Why does the housing ‘plan’ for families moving from welfare to work […]

The Community Stake in Section 8 Restructuring

Low-income communities have much at stake in the restructuring of the FHA-insured Section 8 multifamily housing portfolio. The first policy imperative of the restructuring should be to do no harm. Many HUD multifamily projects are located in low-income communities. In many cases, these projects are in relatively good condition and are a community asset. If […]

Section 8 Reform Offers Opportunity for Nonprofits

Over the next decade, subsidies on nearly 900,000 units of Section 8-supported, FHA-insured housing in 8,500 projects will expire. These properties with rents above Fair Market Rents are candidates for the benefits of S. 513, the Multifamily Assisted Housing Reform and Affordability Act of 1997 introduced by Senator Connie Mack (R-FL). Patterned after last year’s […]

What Happened to Our Commitment to Affordable Housing?

The purpose of government is to perform critical functions that the private sector is not performing. When minimum wage workers – much less the millions of elderly, disabled, and families without jobs – can’t afford a private sector apartment in most urban areas, the private sector is clearly not fulfilling this function. Nonprofits are doing […]

Effects of Possible Changes to Section 8

We as a nation need to assure that affordable housing is available to the very poor, to those on welfare who are soon to enter the workforce, and to those who work 40 to 60 hours a week yet still can’t acquire decent shelter and other essentials. We also need to ensure that those unable […]