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The HOME Act’s Approach to Housing Affordability

November 22, 2019 | Mike Kingsella and Melissa Winkler

Last month, Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) and House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-SC) introduced the Housing, Opportunity, Mobility, and Equity Act of 2019, otherwise known as the HOME Act. The bill is similar to legislation of the same name introduced by Senator Booker in the previous Congress. The legislation addresses the housing affordability crisis through two channels: eliminating exclusionary zoning policies and providing relief directly to renters.

The nation is experiencing a severe housing crisis, which is evidenced in the 7.3 million home underproduction from 2000 – 2015 and the fact that approximately 50% of renters are cost-burdened, which is itself the product of our nationwide shortage of homes. The impacts of the housing crisis are felt across the country, from rural areas to major urban centers. The HOME Act’s co-sponsors represent two ends of the housing spectrum; New Jersey is the densest state in the nation, while South Carolina is in the middle third of state density and contains large swaths of rural areas. Given the depth and breadth of the housing crisis, federal proposals that seek to address housing affordability are welcome here to read more.

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