HUD Secretary Julián Castro recently announced HUD’s latest national one-night estimate of homelessness, highlighting a continuing decline across the nation. HUD’s 2015 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress found that there has been an overall 11 percent decrease and 26 percent drop in the unsheltered homeless population since 2010, when President Obama launched Opening Doors, the nation’s first-ever comprehensive strategy to prevent and end homelessness. Between 2010 and January 2015, veteran homelessness declined 36 percent, family homelessness declined 19 percent, and chronic homelessness declined 22 percent. MORE
FHFA Announces Expansion of NSI Program Atlanta among 18 metro included
Washington, DC – The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) today announced an expansion of the Neighborhood Stabilization Initiative (NSI) to 18 additional metropolitan areas around the country. Effective December 1, local community organizations will be given the opportunity to review and purchase foreclosed properties owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac in these 18 additional metropolitan areas prior to these properties being made publicly available for purchase. Sales prices will vary from market to market. MORE | AJC
Fannie, Freddie Regulator Leaves Affordable-Housing Targets Little Changed
By Joe Light, Wall Street Journal. FHFA won’t push the mortgage companies to direct additional lending resources to low-income borrowers – Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s regulator won’t push the mortgage companies to direct additional lending resources to low-income borrowers, a blow to affordable housing advocates. On Wednesday, the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced new target goals for the percentage of the mortgage companies’ business that must go to less well-off borrowers. Under the new goals, which are effective from this year to 2017, 24% of Fannie’s and Freddie’s mortgages to buy homes will be expected to go to families with incomes no higher than 80% of their areas’ median income, up one percentage point from 2014. Fannie and Freddie will also have the goal of directing 6% of their home purchase loans to families with incomes that are no more than half of their areas’ median, down one percentage point from 2014. MORE
Explaining Atlanta’s Housing: Fewer Owners, More Renters
By Michael Kanell, Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Data dribbling out of the Census Bureau helps explain what’s going on with the local housing market. While it’s national information, the numbers shed light on the metro Atlanta housing market’s on-again, off-again recovery from the worst-ever collapse of residential real estate. In recent days, the Census Bureau has released several relevant reports showing that the recession not only crushed demand for homes, it left a long – and potentially permanent imprint – on the first-time homebuyers needed for a healthy market. And for those concerned with rejuvenating metro Atlanta’s market, it is the lingering impact that is most troubling. MORE
J. Ronald Terwilliger Foundation for Housing America’s Families The Silent Housing Crisis: A snapshot of current and future conditions
Today, nearly six years after the Great Recession officially ended, our nation’s housing system remains in a state of crisis. Soaring rental demand, an acute shortage of affordable rental homes, significantly tougher mortgage underwriting standards, and an uneven economic recovery have all combined to make housing a source of distress and instability for millions of Americans. With little relief in sight, growing numbers of families find themselves stuck between a rental market they can no longer afford and a homeownership market for which they do not qualify. A legacy of the Great Recession, the dire state of housing in our country is a “silent” crisis often overlooked by policymakers, ignored by the media and underestimated by the general public, despite deeply impacting millions of families and clouding our nation’s future. FULL REPORT
Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation 2015 PAHRC Report: The Value of Home
Households receiving rental assistance have greater stability, are less likely to experience homelessness, and live in higher quality units less likely to pose health and safety risks than unassisted low-income renters. Assisted renters are also better positioned to invest in their futures through savings and have better access to jobs and amenities through public transportation. – The Value of Home – 2015 PAHRC Report. FULL REPORT
State of the Nation’s Housing 2015, By The Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies
The US housing recovery lost momentum in 2014 as homeownership rates continued to fall, single-family construction remained near historic lows, and existing home sales cooled. In contrast, the rental market remained a bright spot, fueled by strong growth in renter households. With rents rising and incomes well below pre-recession levels, though, the number of housing costburdened renters set another record, far surpassing public efforts to provide affordable housing. And despite the rebound in much of the nation, a number of minority and low income neighborhoods remain severely distressed. This annual report is produced by the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY | FULL REPORT
New Book: Preventing the Next Mortgage Crisis: The Meltdown, the Federal Response, and the Future of Housing in America, By Dan Immergluck
The U.S. mortgage crisis was a transformative event that will reverberate for decades across families, neighborhoods, and cities. After years of research on various aspects of the crisis, Dan Immergluck examines what went wrong, identifying the factors that created the fragile housing finance system, which provided fertile ground for calamity. He also examines the federal response to the crisis, including who benefitted most from the response, and how a more effective and fair response could have been formulated. To reduce the incidence of future crises, Immergluck provides a pathway for building a more stable and fair housing finance system that would be less vulnerable to the booms and busts of global finance. Housing finance helps determine access to stable, decent-quality, affordable housing and also affects the geography of housing and educational opportunities. Thus, housing markets shape our communities, our neighborhoods, and our social and economic opportunities. Immergluck’s analysis and formulation of a way forward will be of particular interest to those concerned with urban form, neighborhood change and stability, and urban planning and policy, as well as those interested in housing and mortgage markets more generally. MORE
Atlanta Regional Housing Forum Steering Committee
The Atlanta Regional Housing Forum is a quarterly educational event designed to engage affordable housing and community development stakeholders from a broad cross-section of audiences. Topics covered include affordable housing, transportation, healthy communities, and other related matters.
The Forum is guided by a steering committee that includes representatives of: Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership (ANDP), Atlanta Beltline, Enterprise Community Partners, Georgia ACT, Georgia DCA, Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association, Progressive Redevelopment, Inc., Southface, and others. The steering committee selects the topics, secures presenters and is lead by Bill Bolling, former Executive Director of the Atlanta Community Food Bank.
Currently, Forum events are held at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church at 435 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30308. Forum events are held four times a year- usually the first Wednesday of the quarter from 9:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.
Forum events are free to attend but registration is required and attendees are asked to bring donations of food for the Atlanta Community Food Bank.