Focused On Housing Crisis, HUD Unveils 2024 Fiscal Year Proposed Budget

By SCOTT KIMBLER Leaders at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development have unveiled their proposed budget for FY 2024 and say funds will be directed at solving the nation’s housing crisis. Secretary Marcia Fudge said in a statement that the proposed budget will help ensure every American has access to housing. “The budget invests in Americans at every station in life – from those seeking to purchase a home to those who receive HUD rental assistance – and will ensure families across the country can live in communities that are safe, affordable, and resilient,” Fudge said. HUD Deputy Secretary Adrianne Todman said during a press call that the budget reflects the Biden administration’s values and provides a blueprint…

Administration: Buyers Will Save Money On Mortgage Payments Through Premium Reduction

By KIMBERLEY HAAS The Biden administration has announced a reduction on mortgage insurance premiums in a move they say could benefit an estimated 850,000 borrowers over the coming year. New borrowers who take out loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration will see the effects of the reduced premiums, according to a press release. The premiums will be reduced from 0.85% to 0.55% for most homebuyers, which could mean an estimated savings of $678 million for American families by the end of 2023, according to officials. Vice President Kamala Harris and Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Marcia Fudge made the announcement in Bowie, Md., on Wednesday. White House officials said the average homebuyer in Prince George’s County –…

HUD Assisting Local Governments Bringing Housing And Transportation Together

Officials at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development have opened a portal for local government leaders to request technical assistance so housing needs are considered as part of their larger infrastructure investment plans. The Thriving Communities technical assistance program was designed to help local government leaders identify land for housing development near transportation projects, develop preservation and anti-displacement strategies, reduce barriers to location-efficient housing, improve intergovernmental coordination, and support a holistic approach to housing and transportation. HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge said they are working with local government leaders, transit authorities, metropolitan planning organizations, the private sector, and community-based organizations. “A thriving community is intentional about building and preserving affordable housing near public transportation and leveraging infrastructure investments to…

HUD Officials To Fight Inequities In Housing With New Proposed Rule

By KIMBERLEY HAAS A new proposed rule meeting President Joe Biden’s call to fully enforce the Fair Housing Act was announced by officials at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development on Thursday. “Affirmatively furthering fair housing means more than merely steering clear of housing discrimination violations,” Demetria McCain, principal deputy assistant secretary for fair housing and equal opportunity, said in a statement. “Today, HUD is taking new, bold action to eliminate the historic patterns of segregation that continue to harm American families. This action will help make the purpose of the Fair Housing Act reality by making it easier for local communities to identify inequities and make concrete commitments to address them.” According to a press release, the rule…

Homelessness Report Released By HUD Officials

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Homelessness has risen for individuals and people with disabilities, according to the 2022 Annual Homeless Assessment Report released on Monday by officials at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Homelessness among single individuals increased by 3.1%. The number of people with disabilities experiencing homelessness for long periods of time increased by 16% between 2020 and 2022. The report found 582,462 people were experiencing homelessness on a single night in January 2022. States with the highest numbers of people who were homeless in 2022 include California (171,521), New York (74,178), Florida (25,959), Washington (25,211), and Texas (24,432). Officials say the Biden-Harris Administration is working to reverse the post-2016 trend of rising homelessness. Their goal is to…

Bidding Wars For Rentals Seen As Prices Rise

By KIMBERLEY HAAS As prices for rental housing continue to climb in many parts of the country, bidding wars are becoming more common. According to a report released last week by Joel Berner and Danielle Hale for Realtor.com, rent has reached another high in the company’s data history, averaging $1,827 in the 50 largest US metropolitan areas. Rental increases are most pronounced in Sun Belt metros, Berner and Hale wrote. That is because as more people have the opportunity to work remotely they are choosing warmer climates to live in. Three Florida metros are particularly affected. They include Miami, where rent was up 51.6% from April 2021; Orlando, 32.9%; and Tampa, 27.8%. Overall median rent in the Miami, Fort Lauderdale,…

$3.3 Million In Funding Available To Combat COVID-19 Housing Discrimination

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Officials at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development are making an additional $3,285,353 in American Rescue Plan funding available to help fight housing discrimination related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The announcement was made on Tuesday and according to a press release, this is the third round of American Rescue Plan funding that targets COVID-19 related discrimination. About $16.1 million in funding has been awarded to 62 HUD Fair Housing Initiatives Program agencies to address the impact the pandemic has had on communities of color, low-income communities, and other vulnerable populations. Demetria L. McCain, HUD’s Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, said in a statement that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to reveal…

Biden-Harris Tackle Equity In Lending And Appraisals

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Vice President Kamala Harris joined officials from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development on Wednesday to announce the delivery of a plan designed to dismantle racial bias in the home lending and appraisal process. The Interagency Task Force on Property Appraisal and Valuation Equity (PAVE) Action Plan submitted to President Joe Biden will, when enacted, represent the most wide-ranging set of reforms ever put forward to advance equity in the home appraisal process, according to a press release. During her speech, Harris described how a home ensures future financial security and peace of mind for families. “Imagine a young couple that saves enough money to put a down payment on a home. The day they…

$2.65 Billion In Funding Awarded To Help The Homeless

By KIMBERLEY HAAS The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has announced over $2.6 billion to fund roughly 7,000 local homeless housing and service programs throughout the country. HUD Secretary Marcia L. Fudge said that access to stable housing is a basic necessity and the safety of a home is essential as the United States continues to fight COVID. “These Continuum of Care program grants, coupled with the historic resources in the American Rescue Plan, will deliver communities the resources needed to ensure that every person in a respective community has the equitable opportunity to a safe and stable home,” Fudge said in a statement released on Monday. The FY 2021 Continuum of Care Competition Awards will provide funding…

CT Town Will Pay $350,000 To Settle Discrimination Lawsuit as Biden Admin Promotes Housing for Disabled

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Officials from the U.S. Department of Justice have announced a settlement in a lawsuit against a Connecticut town that refused to allow the operation of a group home for people with mental health disabilities. The DOJ lawsuit alleges officials in Wolcott, Conn. violated the Fair Housing Act when they denied a special use permit to L&R Realty and SELF, Inc. to open a residence for 13 geriatric adults with mental health disabilities. Lawyers at the Justice Department filed suit last December. “Local governments do not have the right to use zoning laws and restrictions as a vehicle to discriminate against people with disabilities,” Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division said in…