NAR responded to the White House rental program by suggesting other solutions, such as grants, and warning that policies can drive housing providers from the market.
WASHINGTON – On Wednesday, the Biden-Harris Administration announced a new 18-page Blueprint for a Renters Bill of Rights. It’s a multipronged approach that impacts a number of government agencies, including the DOJ, HUD, FHFA, FTC, CFPB and others.
Any change in rental policy affects the U.S. housing industry, and the National Association of Home Builders immediately released a statement say the changes are “not as bad as it could have been” even though it’s the “wrong strategy.”
The National Association of Realtors® (NAR) has also issued a statement about the Blueprint program. In an open letter written by NAR President Kenny Parcell, the association suggest the president and other federal officials could do more good by looking at other ways to serve renters.
NAR President Parcell’s letter
“Rents are rising, driven by inflation and exacerbated by the housing supply shortage,” Parcell writes. “We encourage the administration to look more deeply at how it can address the root causes of rental affordability – namely, affordable housing supply.
“To immediately address the lack of housing affordability, NAR encourages the Administration and Congress to examine providing rental assistance through a range of channels, including grants, state and local fiscal recovery funding, and a variety of HUD (Department of Housing and Urban Development) programs that can be better funded and improved.
“NAR supported rental assistance throughout the pandemic, which was vital for struggling tenants and mom-and-pop housing providers. These small investors provide more than 40% of all rental housing in America and are essential to growing the nation’s affordable housing supply.
“Consumers may benefit from the federal government raising awareness about existing protections within their lease agreements and through state and local laws. NAR has committed to creating resources for Realtors® that highlight ways to incorporate resident-center property management practices in their businesses. These resources include advertising to prospective residents that Housing Choice Vouchers are accepted at their property, providing information about rental assistance, and using alternative credit scores for applicants without a detailed credit history.
“Rental housing policy is heavily regulated at the state and local level. Federally enacted policies can potentially drive housing providers out of the market, which will have an immediate and long-term impact of making rental housing even more competitive and, therefore, more expensive for renters. Expanding the federal government’s role in rental policy also places an even greater undue burden on mom-and-pop housing providers.
“We will continue to advocate for common sense solutions that do not negatively impact small housing providers and address affordability by increasing the housing supply.”
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