The high cost of housing in the Greater Boston area can make it difficult for families to find an affordable home.
Mike has made preserving and creating affordable housing a priority as mayor and in Congress. He consistently searches for ways not only to rehabilitate existing stock but also to protect federal housing programs that help ease the affordability burden.
Many of these federal housing programs are at risk under the Trump Administration. The Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG) which directs federal funds to qualified communities is one program that the administration seeks to eliminate. This money is used for many community improvements, including affordable housing initiatives. The Trump budget also eliminates the National Housing Trust Fund, which states can access to develop affordable rental housing. Mike is standing strong against this troubling trend. Mike knows that these programs not only support housing efforts, they also have a positive impact on neighborhood quality of life and the economy.
Multi-family houses are plentiful in the 7th District. Mike lives in a two-family home in Somerville. In other parts of the country they are less common and Mike has had to educate his colleagues about their specific economic characteristics. Mike ensured that Massachusetts’ unique double and triple decker houses receive the same benefits as single unit homes. As a result of his efforts, the federal loan limits for multi-family homes were increased, making it easier for qualified families to purchase a home.
Mike supports federal policies that help homeowners with mortgages higher than the market value refinance their loans, reducing risk of foreclosure. This is a devastating outcome for families but also hurts the value of other homes in the area.
The high cost of housing does not just impact homeowners. Mike authored a provision in a housing law protecting tenants living in foreclosed homes. Now, tenants are given 90 days’ notice before they must vacate a foreclosed home. Prior to Mike’s proposal, tenants faced immediate eviction.
Mike has long supported increasing the percentage of housing units designated affordable when property developers are building new dwellings. The challenges related to the availability of affordable housing impact the fabric of our neighborhoods and cities. Mike will continue making this a priority in Congress.