July 13, 2018

Community Developments: An Analysis Looks at How Changes in the Tax Code and Market Impact the Housing Credit

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Community Developments

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Community Developments: An Analysis Looks at How Changes in the Tax Code and Market Impact the Housing Credit  

  • A blog post by the Urban Institute explains that corporations have decreased their equity investments in the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (Housing Credit), the nation’s primary tool for developing and preserving affordable rental housing, following the Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017, which lowered the top corporate tax rate to 21 percent. The post also notes that the temporary 12.5 percent increase in Housing Credit allocation enacted in March can help more Housing Credit developments access financing, although more resources are needed to fully meet the demand. Finally, Urban emphasizes the importance of identifying solutions that sustain the production of affordable rental housing. (Urban Institute, July 12) As previously highlighted in Community Developments, the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act (S. 548), bipartisan legislation proposed by Senators Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), would mitigate the expected losses in affordable rental housing production by expanding the Housing Credit by 50 percent.
  • Earlier this week, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 368-19 to pass the Housing Choice Voucher Mobility Demonstration Act of 2018, which authorizes $50 million for a new family mobility demonstration program designed to enable families living in HUD-supported housing to move to lower-poverty, higher-opportunity areas. Enterprise supports efforts to boost household mobility and access to opportunity. Visit our Opporunity360 webpage to learn more about how this tool can help policymakers and communities measure and map access to opportunity, including access to affordable housing, education, jobs, transportation and health care.
  • A story from NPR explores how the severe shortage of affordable housing in Branson, Missouri, is forcing seasonal low-wage workers to resort to rundown extended-stay motels. The article points out that summer tourists occupy a significant number of rental homes, leaving little low-cost housing for workers. The article also notes that as low-wage seasonal jobs disappear in the winter, workers are even less able to afford rental housing and often stay in motels costing about $500 a month. With tourism bringing more than eight million people a year to Branson, worker advocates are fighting for increased wages and more low-income housing. (NPR, July 11)

Upcoming Webinar

  • On Tuesday, July 17, the National Low Income Housing Coalition will host a webinar on “Our Homes, Our Votes: An Introduction and an Exploration of Legal Considerations.” This first session of a six-part series will provide an overview of the Our Homes, Our Votes effort, highlight the importance of increased voter participation of low income renters and their allies, and discuss best practices for remaining non-partisan in all voter engagement activities. Register here for the webinar.  

In Case You Missed It

  • NextCity has published an article that looks at FloodHelpNY, a post Hurricane Sandy initiative that aims to identify necessary resiliency improvements in multifamily affordable housing and the city’s Housing Development Fund Corporation (HDFC) co-ops and cooperatives. The article notes that Enterprise Community Partners’ New York market office conducts free resiliency audits as part of the initiative, which was established by the Center for New City Neighborhoods and is funded by the Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery and New York Rising. Enterprise has a key role in educating residents on what improvements are likely to yield the most benefits in a cost-effective manner. The article also highlights the challenges faced by property owners in some of the audited co-ops, pointing out that many lower- to middle-income property owners do not have access to the capital required to make the recommended improvements. (NextCity, July 11)

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