Report Suggests ‘Internet Rating’ for Updated CRA Assessment Areas

In a new paper, Mark Willis with the Furman Center, suggests including an ‘Internet Rating’ in a modernized Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) framework since the current assessment areas used to delineate the primary geographies within a bank’s CRA test do not adequately account for the rise of internet banking. Under his proposal, banks would be separately evaluated for CRA performance within its assessment area(s), as well as beyond its assessment area(s), with the latter evaluation consisting of both a retail products test and a community development test. The results of these tests would then be blended together to arrive at the overall rating for the bank.

CDFI Fund Releases FY 2019 CMF Application Demand

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund) released the application data for the fiscal year (FY) 2019 round of its Capital Magnet Fund program. A total of 113 organizations submitted applications requesting more than $522 million in funding. The applicants propose to serve 49 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.  In total, 58 percent of the applicants are certified Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), and the remaining 42 percent of the applicants are nonprofit affordable housing organizations.

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Rep. Case Introduces Legislation Aimed at Airbnb, HomeAway

Representative Ed Case (D-HI) introduced the Protecting Local Authority and Neighborhoods Act (H.R. 4232), which would hold tech platforms like Airbnb and HomeAway responsible for illegal short-term rentals. Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) prevents tech companies from being held legally responsible for most content posted by third parties. State and local governments have passed legislation banning short-term rentals that can deplete the stock of affordable housing, but tech rental platforms are using Section 230 of the CDA to sue or delay the laws from being implemented.

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Senate Introduces Companion Rural Housing Preservation Act of 2019

Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Tina Smith (D-MN) introduced the Rural Housing Preservation Act of 2019 (S. 2567). The bill would expand U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development (RD) rental assistance programs, permanently authorize the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Multifamily Housing Preservation and Revitalization program, and direct RD to better align its policies with the LIHTC program. Similar legislation (H.R. 3620) was passed by the House of Representatives on September 10. The House version of the bill also authorizes $1 billion to carry out the program and requires USDA to create a plan for preservation of rural multifamily housing backed by USDA loans and would establish an advisory committee to advise USDA in implementing this plan.

California Rent Control – What Investors Need to Know

Marcus & Millichap will host a webinar on October 10 at 1:00 pm EDT to discuss the recently-passed California Tenant Protection Act of 2019, also known as CA Assembly Bill 1482. The panelists (John Sebree, Marcus & Millichap; Jim Lapides,National Multifamily Housing Council; Damon Conklin,Federation of California Builders Exchanges; and John Chang, Marcus & Millichap) will discuss what the California Tenant Protection Act is; how the new law will affect investors’ ability to raise rents; what properties are affected; how AB 1482 will impact apartment property values and what it means for investors. Register here.

Quicken Loans, City of Detroit Release Sustainable Financing for Healthy Housing RFP

The Quicken Loans Community Fund, the City of Detroit Housing and Revitalization Department and Quantified Ventures are seeking applications from local organizations that holistically tackle housing challenges affecting the health and well-being of the Detroit community – either by eliminating systemic barriers to housing, or by securing safe, quality housing for low-income and typically underserved residents. The awarded team(s) will have an opportunity to work with Quantified Ventures to engage one or more payors (e.g., health systems). Applications are due on December 16, 2019. Applicants will be notified by mid-March 2020. Register here for a webinar on October 16 at 10:30 am EDT to learn more about the RFP.

DC Commits to Deliver 36,000 housing Units by 2025, Launches Housing Data Blog

Following a report from the Urban Institute that estimates the Washington, DC region needs 374,000 more housing units by 2030, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments approved regional housing targets. DC Mayor Muriel Bowser set a goal to deliver 36,000 housing units by the year 2025. The office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning & Economic Development recently launched the DC Housing Data Blog to build a stronger shared understanding of housing data in the District. The blog provides analysis on housing in the District, as well as on the many factors that influence housing, such as employment, the economy and business development.