HousingPolicy.org Forum

Live at the Forum Webinar - Rental Preservation Inventories: Perspectives from Policy and Practice

Join us Wednesday, November 10 at 2:00 p.m. Eastern/11:00 a.m. Pacific for the next Live at the Forum, the first in a series that will focus on rental housing. This webinar session will focus on rental housing inventory databases as a tool to develop and implement a preservation strategy. The speakers will provide examples of how data in preservation inventories have informed legislation at the federal level, as well as perspectives from state and local organizations.   

Speakers will include Megan DeCrappeo from the National Low Income Housing Coalition, Anne Ray of the Shimberg Center for Housing Studies at the University of Florida and Vincent Reina from the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy at New York University.

  • Participate in the webinar: The two-part event begins at 2:00 p.m. EST (11:00 a.m. PST) with a 60-minute webinar that will provide an opportunity to listen to each speaker as well as ask questions. Click here to register!
  • Continue the conversation: Immediately following the call, we encourage you to post additional questions and comments in this discussion thread.
More information about rental preservation inventories and databases is available in a Center for Housing Policy Insights from Housing Policy Research brief and on HousingPolicy.org.

Click here to view Megan DeCrappeo's PowerPoint slides used during the webinar.

To listen to a recording of this webinar and access other materials related to this series, please visit HousingPolicy.org.

Tags: live at the forum

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Replies to This Discussion

Are the 450,000 Section 515 USDA rural rental housing units going to be included? There are about 16,000 projects in rural areas. (from John Meyers)
Yes, we will absolutely include these projects in our national database. This data isn't currently made publicly available by USDA, but we and others continue to work with USDA to obtain that data and encourage them to make it publicly available.
USDA does have a rental search on their website-are you not aware of this, or do you mean that you need it in a better format for your needs?
Anne, for any one county, what percentage of assisted housing, from all sources, is found in the Shimberg database? (from Joe Baldwin)
We include all housing that is subsidized by HUD mortgage and rental assistance programs, by Florida Housing Finance Corporation, by USDA Rural Development mortgages and rental assistance, and by mortgage revenue bonds financing from local housing finance authorities.We exclude some properties if their HUD mortgages do not carry any income or rent restrictions. We do not have data on project-based vouchers, locally allocated HOME, Section 8 Mod Rehab, and a few other federal programs (Megan mentioned some examples where data are not available). For a full list of the programs that we include, see http://flhousingdata.shimberg.ufl.edu/AHI_User_Guide.html#part9.
Anne, how were you able to create you "Lost Properties Inventory"? We've had trouble tracking HUD properties lost to conversion. (from Val Iverson)
There are a few sources. First, we've been updating our Assisted Housing Inventory annually since 2004, so we're able to track any properties that were in the inventory one year but dropped out the next. For pre-2004 losses, we received a file kept by an FHA staff member of Section 8 opt-outs from 1993 on. Our state HFA and RD office also sent us files of inactive properties so we could add pre-2004 properties from them. From here on out, we'll keep track of the properties that drop out of our inventory each year and add them to the Lost Properties Inventory.
You addressed the question of including affordable, non-subsidized units in preservation catalogs and the issues that complicate their inclusion. Are any of the speakers -- or anyone else on the Forum -- aware of states and localities that actually are trying to do incorporate the unsubsidized stock?
In Phoenix, we are exploring ways to track affordable non-subsidized units along our new light rail so that units will not be lost to gentrification.
Affordable housing databases are key to preserving the valuable assisted housing stock that now exists. But they are time intensive to create and maintain. Only a handful of generous grants from MacArthur Foundation were given to establish these databases across the country. Most organizations are underfunded and understaffed these days. Most of us understand the importance of these inventories; but without funding sources, they will be difficult to implement.
You're absolutely right that this work is time intensive and requires dedicated funding. We are hopeful that 1) the Preservation Bill (HR 4868) or some similar bill is passed that requires HUD and USDA to provide data on all of their programs and make this data easier to integrate into one database - namely by creating a unique ID - and that provides grants to states and localities so that they can carry out this work; 2) even without legislation, HUD will continue to work towards the goals in Frank's preservation bill; and 3) the work we at NLIHC are doing in building a national preservation inventory of all federally subsidized housing will be useful to groups who want to create these types of databases.
I agree, it is time, labor and cost intensive to build these databases and then to create platforms for people to easily access the data. The efforts around national databases will help a lot however there is also a need to promote additional support for local agencies who are often the primary source of useful data and are fighting for resources to enhance their systems. Data systems, and technological advances, are an important thing to keep in mind as we develop new programs and modify existing ones. While that may sound generic, I think it is really important for our industry to keep thinking about ways to use technology to expand access to data so that going forward it will be easier and cheaper for everyone to create inventories and access important information.


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