Top Story: Biden administration proposes ‘Renters Bill of Rights’
The Biden Administration proposed a Blueprint for a Renters Bill of Rights last week to “promote fairness for Americans living in housing,” according to the White House.
Because renters around the country are only protected by a patchwork of state and local laws, the administration has outlined key principles that federal agencies should promote to protect renters.
The goal is to ensure that all renters receive:
- Access to safe, quality, accessible, and affordable housing.
- Clear and fair leases.
- Enforcement of renters rights and protection from unlawful discrimination and exclusion.
- The right to organize without obstruction or harassment from landlords.
- Eviction prevention, diversion, and relief.
The administration has also directed the federal agencies that run housing assistance programs to take various actions that will promote these goals.
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HUD proposes stronger fair housing rule
HUD announced it will publish a new fair housing rule that would require local governments to Affirmatively Further Fair Housing.
The proposal requires local governments to include an analysis of past patterns of racial discrimination and segregation when updating their community development plans.
Local governments must also propose concrete actions to address the impact of long-term segregation. If local governments do not follow the new rules, they risk losing all federal funding.
The proposed rule will be published in The Federal Register soon for public comment.
The average American renter is cost-burdened, study shows
A new study from Moody’s Analytics shows that the average American renter is now paying too much for housing, leaving less money to pay for other critical expenses like heat, electricity, food, and medical expenses.
For the first time since tracking began more than 20 years ago, the average American renter paid 30% of their income for housing.
The federal government says that households should pay less than 30% of income for rent or they are considered cost-burdened.
Report shows low-income renters worse off than before the pandemic
A new report from the Urban Institute shows that low-income renters are worse off now than before the COVID-19 pandemic and even in its early stages.
Low-income renters are more likely now to be behind on rent payments and saving less than before the COVID-19 crisis. Few renters were able to negotiate smaller rent increases with their landlords.
Also, fewer low-income renters were able to work remotely, limiting their chances to move to more affordable areas.
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