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HUD, NAR Discuss Barriers to Homeownership

The National Association of Realtors and the Department of Housing and Urban Development held a roundtable discussion, highlighting affordability concerns across the nation

“Housing affordability is one of the most significant problems facing this nation, our economy and potential homebuyers in communities everywhere, and the lack of housing supply is only adding to the problem,” said NAR President John Smaby, a second-generation Realtor from Edina, Minnesota. 

The NAR states that housing inventory has been considered the main cause to raising home prices. While new-home construction has picked up, “it is still not enough to accommodate increased housing demand.” 

The Federal Housing Administration finalized new condominium loan policies, which the NAR states should “yield thousands of new homeownership opportunities and alleviate some affordability restraints for first-time homebuyers, small families, and those in urban areas. 

Additionally, HUD and the Department of Justice announced it will ease the use of the False Claims Act. The NAR applauded this decision, adding it will “help more consumers access low down payment loans and ensure a wide range of financial institutions will offer Federal Housing Administration-backed loans in the future.”

“The major mechanism for building wealth in this country is home ownership and doing it in a responsible—that’s they key—and this is all look at in terms of sustainability," said HUD Secretary Dr. Benjamin Carson on the impact of the new regulations surrounding the False Claims Act. "Not only do we want to put people in homes, but we want them to stay in those homes so they can accumulate that wealth.” 

President Donald Trump announced earlier this year, the creation of a White House Council on Eliminating Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing. 

The White States that more than 25% of the cost of a new home is due to federal, state, and local regulations.

“Regulations are creating excessive costs that are holding back the development of needed affordable housing,” the White House said earlier this year. “Many of the markets with the most severe shortages in affordable housing have the most restrictive state and local regulatory barriers to development.”

About Author: Mike Albanese

A graduate of the University of Alabama, Mike Albanese has worked for news publications since 2011 in Texas and Colorado. He has built a portfolio of more than 1,000 articles, covering city government, police and crime, business, sports, and is experienced in crafting engaging features and enterprise pieces. He spent time as the sports editor for the "Pilot Point Post-Signal," and has covered the DFW Metroplex for several years. He has also assisted with sports coverage and editing duties with the "Dallas Morning News" and "Denton Record-Chronicle" over the past several years.
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