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The Housing Trust Fund (HTF) is a permanent federal fund authorized by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA). It is intended to provide grants to States to increase and preserve the supply of rental housing for extremely low- and very low‐income families, including homeless families, and to increase homeownership for extremely low- and very low‐income families. Advocating for Trust Fund resources and a dedicated, sustainable funding source is one of NCSHA’s Legislative Priorities.
 
HERA requires Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the GSEs) to transfer a percentage of their new business to finance the HTF, but before any contributions were made, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were placed in conservatorship and their conservator, FHFA, suspended contributions to the HTF. On December 11, 2014, FHFA announced that it was directing the GSEs to begin setting aside funds for the HTF beginning January 1, 2015.
 
HFAs and the Housing Trust Fund
Each state will decide whether its HFA or another state entity will receive these grants, which will be allocated according to a needs-based formula developed by HUD. Eligible HTF activities are defined as the production, preservation, and rehabilitation of rental housing; and the production, preservation, and rehabilitation of housing for homeownership, including down payment assistance, closing cost assistance, and assistance for interest rate buy-downs. 
 
For years in which there is more than $1 billion in the HTF, 75 percent of assistance received must benefit extremely low-income families (with incomes not greater than 30 percent of area median income (AMI)) and up to 25 percent must benefit very low-income families (with incomes not greater than 50 AMI). For years in which there is less than $1 billion in the HTF, 100 percent of all assistance must be used benefit extremely low-income families. State spending on homeownership activities is limited to not more than 10 percent of total assistance provided.
 
Useful Links:
NCSHA’s blog on the Housing Trust Fund Interim Rule
HUD's Housing Trust Fund Webpage