Affordable Housing

Part of: 2022 Policy Platform

LEADINGAGE ADVOCACY GOALS

  • Address the severe shortage of affordable senior housing by expanding, preserving, and improving the portfolio.
  • Improve resident health by using the affordable housing platform to connect residents to services and supports, including by expanding the number of Service Coordinators.
  • Support HUD processes, requirements, and inspection protocols that correspond to the operation of high quality affordable senior housing.

THE ISSUE

There is a severe shortage of affordable housing for older adults with low incomes. Between 2009 and 2019, the number of very low income older adult households spending more than half of their incomes on rent increased by an astonishing 68%. The number of older adults who receive federal housing assistance must expand well beyond the 2.5 million older adults who currently benefit from housing assistance. Having affordable, service-connected housing allows older adults to live independently in community and avoid much more expensive and restrictive settings. Any expansion will immediately help erase and shorten current waiting lists of two to five (or more) years and help the nation prepare for the projected 13.8 million new older adult households between 2020 and 2040. Of these, 40% (5.5 million) will be renter households. Of these 5.5 million new older adult renter households, 2.6 million will be Black older adult renter households.

ADVOCACY ACTION 2022

117th Session of Congress

Click here to see the full list of affordable housing legislation LeadingAge is following in the 117th Congress.
 
Secure Robust Fiscal Year 2023 HUD Appropriations Funding:
  • Expand the supply of affordable senior housing:
    • Provide $600 million for new capital advances and operating assistance, including Service Coordinators, for approximately 6,200 new Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly homes.
  •  Preserve and improve HUD-assisted housing:
    • Provide full funding for Section 8 Project-Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) and Project Rental Assistance Contract (PRAC) renewals, including funding to acknowledge elevated operational costs, including for insurance, safety and staffing, sustained after the onset of COVID.
    • Ensure RAD for PRAC Success:
      • Continue to authorize rent levels for continued availability of services for residents following RAD conversion.
      • Provide $10 million for RAD for PRAC conversion subsidy to ensure the successful and long-term preservation of 202/PRAC homes.
  • Connect HUD-assisted residents to the services and supports they need to age in the community: 
    • Provide $125 million for the renewal of existing Service Coordinator grants.
    • Provide $100 million for 400 new, three-year Service Coordinator grants and expand eligibility to 202/PRAC communities.
    • Provide a $31 million increase for new budget-based Service Coordinators.
    • Expand ConnectHome and Neighborhood Networks programs to improve internet access in HUD multifamily housing; direct HUD to collaborate with the FCC and NTIA to bridge the connectivity divide.
    • Direct HUD to report to Congress on ways to, and progress toward, increasing internet connectivity in HUD multifamily housing, including by expanding HUD-covered housing costs to include ongoing internet service fees.

Expand and improve the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program

  • Increase state Housing Credit allocations by 50%.
  • Fix Right of First Refusal issues that continue to rob nonprofit housing providers of their Housing Credit-financed developments.
  • Lower the threshold of Private Activity Bond financing required to trigger the maximum amount of 4% Housing Credits from 50% to 25%.
  • Enable the Housing Credit to better serve households with extremely low incomes.
  • These and other provisions are in the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act (AHCIA), which LeadingAge supports.

Prevent and End Homelessness:

  • Fund homeless assistance programs.
  • Expand the supply of affordable housing.

Build Back Better / Significant New Housing Investments:

  • In any bill to significantly expand affordable housing resources, include:
  • $2.5 billion for approximately 26,000 new Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly homes.
  • $15 billion for 260,000 new Project-Based Rental Assistance homes.
  • Funding for Service Coordinators across the affordable senior housing portfolio (HUD, Rural Housing Service, Low Income Housing Tax Credit, etc.).

Executive Branch

  • Expanded and Preserved Housing Options: Significantly expand the supply of federally-subsidized housing for older adults with low incomes and older adults experiencing homelessness; and preserve and improve existing supply of housing.
  • Connected, Service-Enriched Housing: Support partnerships between federal agencies to improve access to services and the internet in affordable senior housing communities.
  • Public-Private Partnerships: Strengthen partnerships between private housing providers and the federal government to streamline and improve housing operations.
  • Resilience in Senior Housing: Improve pandemic recovery and build disaster resiliency throughout the senior housing portfolio while improving the federal approach to disaster preparedness and response.

ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE NOW

  • Visit the Advocacy Action Center to let your representative and senators know you support the expansion and preservation of affordable housing programs for older adults.
  • Host a Coffee Chat with Congress in your community to help your members of Congress understand how policies impact HCBS providers and residents.
  • Engage with other affordable senior housing providers through LeadingAge’s Housing Advisory Group (and its five working groups), as well as other regular national, regional, and state meetings. Contact Linda or Juliana for more information.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES