The House on Feb. 2 approved the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2015 (H.R. 3700), legislation that includes many NAHB-supported bipartisan fixes to HUD programs.
Introduced by Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Mo.), the measure contains a number of reforms to increase access to affordable rental housing, provide assistance to low-income renters and facilitate homeownership. Specifically, the bill would:
- Allow the contract terms of HUD’s section 8 Housing Choice Voucher program to be extended from 15 to 20 years.
- Pare down duplicative requirements that have made the Section 8 program difficult to administer.
- Protect Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher residents from displacement due to fluctuations in the Fair Market Rent, which determines payment standard amounts for the voucher program.
- Change the Rural Housing Service Single Family Guaranteed Loan Program so that it will be current with other government loan programs while providing efficiencies for home buyers and lenders.
- Reduce current FHA regulations surrounding existing condominium projects, including streamlining project certification rules and reducing owner-occupancy requirements.