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NCSHA 2021 Priorities

Overview

States created their housing finance agencies (HFAs) to meet their affordable homeownership and rental housing needs, especially the affordable housing challenges faced by underserved households and communities. The National Council of State Housing Agencies (NCSHA) is a national nonprofit, nonpartisan organization created by the nation’s state HFAs to advance through advocacy and education their efforts to provide affordable housing to those who need it.

NCSHA’s priorities, adopted annually by its Board of Directors after consultation with all its HFA members, establish the primary areas of focus for NCSHA in its wide-ranging efforts to expand affordable housing opportunity and strengthen the state HFA role in delivering it.

NCSHA will, year in and year out, pursue on behalf of its HFA members the federal housing resources, policies, and flexibility necessary for them to respond fully to the broad spectrum of affordable housing needs they serve, including: housing for families, persons with special needs, the elderly, people experiencing homelessness, and those at risk of homelessness; through homeownership and rental housing; with both new production and preservation; and in urban, suburban, and rural areas.

NCSHA is also committed, on a permanent basis, to pursuing these goals in a manner that promotes racial equity, intentionally addressing the affordable housing needs and concerns of people and communities of color.

Making progress on each annual priority requires action on various legislative, regulatory, and business issues. Under each priority are listed several priority actions for 2021.

NCSHA’s priorities for 2021 are to:

  • Expand the supply and preservation of affordable for-sale and rental homes for low- and moderate-income households;
  • Support the households and communities hardest hit by the coronavirus and disproportionately harmed by disasters, discrimination, and disinvestment;
  • Expand credit, access, and affordability in housing for households and communities of color; and
  • Strengthen the capacity of state HFAs to more efficiently and effectively serve as the center of the nation’s affordable housing finance system.

2021 Priorities and Priority Actions

Priority: Expand the supply and preservation of affordable for-sale and rental homes for low- and moderate-income households, in part by:

  • Meeting communities’ housing needs by increasing the production and preservation of affordable rental apartments by expanding the Low Income Housing Tax Credit and improving it and tax-exempt Multifamily Housing Bonds through enactment of the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act and the Save Affordable Housing Act, forthcoming in the 117th Congress.
  • Investing in homeownership across the U.S. by stimulating the development and rehabilitation of affordable for-sale housing with improvements to Mortgage Revenue Bonds and Mortgage Credit Certificates through the enactment of the Affordable Housing Bond Enhancement Act and the Neighborhood Homes Investment Act, forthcoming in the 117th Congress.

Priority: Support the households and communities hardest hit by the coronavirus and disproportionately harmed by disasters, discrimination, and disinvestment, in part by:

  • Addressing the housing hardships resulting from the recession through a state HFA-administered Housing Assistance Fund and providing the necessary additional funding and tax incentives to reach the most vulnerable renters, rental properties, and persons experiencing homelessness.
  • Ensuring state HFA affordable lending and servicing activities and multifamily property portfolios are not adversely affected as a result of the pandemic and moratoria, forbearance, and other consumer protections established in response to it, including by providing regulatory flexibilities and re-starting low-cost and flexible affordable housing capital sources such as the FHA – HFA Risk Sharing Program through the Federal Financing Bank.
  • Empower states to better plan for and mitigate disasters and respond to sudden new housing needs as a result of them by establishing authority for emergency supplemental Housing Credits and Housing Bonds.

Priority: Expand credit, access, and affordability in housing for households and communities of color, in part by:

  • Improving accessibility and affordability for first-time buyers and households, including households and communities of color and other underserved groups, through the Federal Housing Administration, Federal Home Loan Banks, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac.
  • Combatting discrimination and expanding opportunities for people and communities who have been historically marginalized in the housing market by protecting and strengthening laws and regulations.
  • Reducing and overcoming systemic barriers in the housing system that unfairly deny people of color access to affordable homeownership and rental housing opportunities in urban, suburban, and rural communities by innovating in research, policy design, program implementation, and strategic partnerships.

Priority: Strengthen the capacity of state HFAs to more efficiently and effectively serve as the center of the nation’s affordable housing finance system, in part by:

  • Advocating for smarter approaches to housing program regulation at the state and local levels that maximize program efficiency and effectiveness by reducing unnecessary and burdensome regulations in federal affordable housing policies and programs.
  • Supporting state HFA business development and innovation that enable the agencies to serve more households more efficiently and effectively through new lending executions, wider capital options, and deeper relationships with the housing government-sponsored enterprises, mortgage bankers, non-bank lenders, and private mortgage insurance companies.
  • Expanding state HFA opportunities to achieve their affordable housing missions by building partnerships with national organizations and industry leaders in other sectors, including health care, education, disaster response and recovery, and economic development.