The National Housing Conference (NHC) applauds Congress and the Trump administration for enacting a critical $2 trillion emergency spending package to provide relief for Americans who have been adversely impacted by COVID-19.
The package includes several measures to help homeowners, renters, and the homeless that were pushed by housing advocates and industry leaders, including mortgage forbearance for homeowners with federally backed mortgages and multifamily property owners who pledge not to evict tenants or charge late fees on rent. The bill also includes $5 billion for the Community Development Block Grant program, $1.25 billion in tenant-based rental assistance, $685 million for public housing, and $4 billion in Emergency Solutions Grants for homeless shelters and outreach workers.
NHC members, who represent the entire housing industry including housing advocates, lenders and developers, worked tirelessly to advocate for important resources for our nation’s homeowners, renters and homeless population. And NHC joined housing organizations to urge Congress to take bold actions to protect renters and homeowners calling for immediate and direct rental assistance among other things.
“NHC is glad to see congressional leaders working together in a bipartisan way to protect American homeowners and renters from losing their homes and providing critical funding to address the safety of our nation’s homeless population during this troubling time,” said David M. Dworkin, NHC president and CEO. “Other critical elements of the housing community also face existential threats, including mortgage servicers, securitizers, affordable housing investors and home builders, to name just a few. We must think ahead eight weeks from now and eight months from now or we will not be prepared to address a housing crisis of potentially unfathomable proportions,” Dworkin said.
As Carol Galante, faculty director at the Terner Center for Housing Innovation at the University of California, Berkeley, wrote in her recent blog post on lessons learned from the housing crisis, “the most important lesson that I learned… is that the inability to predict how bad it could become led the country and its political leaders to be too timid and too indirect.”
There is no way to predict the outcome of this crisis for months to come. NHC will continue to work with its broad membership base to put forth recommendations to mitigate the impact the COVID-19 crisis will have on the housing and rental market.
About NHC: The National Housing Conference has been defending the American Home since 1931. Everyone in America should have equal opportunity to live in a quality, affordable home in a thriving community. NHC convenes and collaborates with our diverse membership and the broader housing and community development sectors to advance our policy, research and communications initiatives to effect positive change at the federal, state and local levels. Politically diverse and nonpartisan, NHC is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.