A new report from the Poverty & Race Research Action Council (PRRAC) entitled “Accessing Opportunity: Affirmative Marketing and Tenant Selection in the LIHTC and Other Housing Programs” examines the accessibility of affordable housing properties for low-income and minority tenants. More specifically, the report finds that even where affordable housing is available in high-opportunity communities, it is still typically not accessible to lower income populations and that communities rich in social resources””such as good schools, environmental quality, and safe streets””frequently have a history of exclusion that can be forbidding to minority families. PRRAC does note however, that affirmative marketing plans have historically served an important role in equal access and helping people overcome exclusion, but that these plans are not used across-the-board for all housing programs. The organization therefore recommends that Affirmative Fair Housing Marketing (AFHM) and tenant selection guidance be implemented for the LIHTC program, similar to what has been adopted for HUD programs. PRRAC also suggests that there is a need for stronger, up-to-date AFHM and tenant selection guidance throughout all federal housing programs, including HUD programs. The agency contends that affirmative marketing plans will ultimately help policymakers ensure that subsidized properties are marketed and occupied in a manner that generates more diverse and open neighborhoods.

Click here to read the PRRAC report.