July 25, 2016
by Amy Wolff Sorter
Amid acceptance speeches at the just-concluded GOP National Convention, The Hill and the National Real Estate Organizations group quietly brought together real estate experts to discuss various issues at the “Real Estate & the U.S. Economy: A Policy Discussion on 2017 and Beyond.” One of those issues was affordable housing.
Presenters noted that, while plenty of high-end multifamily properties are being built, a lack of affordable housing continues to exist. Adding to the problem is that “70% of residents in multifamily developments don’t qualify for the deep subsidies that can make housing affordable,” said Michael Griffin with the National Development Council.
In the midst of this, government agencies continue stimulating even more demand for housing, especially single family housing. The problem is, little on the single-family side is affordable, either. “The history of housing in the United States has been focused on demand, rather than supply,” American Enterprise Institute’s Edward Pinto said. “There is little focus on handling the supply side.”
The panelists’ main suggestions focused on land-rule changes, as well as encouraging municipalities to ease up on multifamily supply restrictions. “If those were removed,” Griffin said, “we could start building enough supply to meet the huge demand.”