Coldwell Banker launches short sale program in California and Arizona
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Coldwell Banker launches short sale program in California and Arizona

February 8, 2009

National Low Income Housing Coalition statement on Senate passage of $15,000 homebuyer tax creditMortgagePress.comNational Low Income Housing Coalition, U.S. Senate, National Housing Trust Fund
The following is a statement from Sheila Crowley, president of
the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), on the U.S.
Senate passage of the $15,000 homebuyer tax credit:
"If the country can afford to subsidize over a million families
no matter what their income to buy new houses, surely we can afford
to prevent a huge increase in the number of people who lose their
homes altogether and become homeless.
"This evening, the U.S. Senate adopted an amendment to the
pending American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 that will
give every homebuyer this year, no matter his or her income, a
$15,000 tax credit. The cost is $18.50 billion. The amendment did
not include an offset, so the cost is added to the total cost of
the bill. The amendment passed by voice vote without a single
Senator raising an objection.
"Yet, the same Senate has not included any funding in the bill
that will produce a single new unit of housing that is affordable
to the poorest families in the country. The Senate bill does not
capitalize the National Housing Trust Fund to build and
rehabilitate rental homes that are affordable to low wage workers,
the unemployed, the disabled, and the elderly. Nor does the Senate
bill provide funding for housing vouchers that would help low
income families afford to rent existing housing in the market.
"Both items have been sought by advocates for low income people
to prevent a surge in homelessness due to the foreclosure crisis
and the recession. The two items together would cost $13.60
billion, and provide 400,000-500,000 poor families with decent
homes they could afford. Any increase in unemployment causes the
poverty level to rise. One in 10 people who are poor will lose
their homes unless steps are taken to prevent them from becoming
homeless. An unemployment rate of 9% is predicted to result in at
least new 800,000 people, including children and seniors, becoming
homeless adding the existing homeless population.
"The bill does include $1.5 billion for emergency housing
assistance for people facing homelessness, an important element to
a homelessness prevention strategy. But permanent affordable homes
are required to assure housing stability for the lowest income
households.
"Capitalizing the National Housing Trust Fund is also an
economic stimulus; housing construction and remodeling are labor
and material intensive, thus creating jobs, increasing the sales of
building and home decorating goods, and generating new state and
local tax revenue. The construction of each new multi-family rental
unit produces 1.16 new jobs and every $100,000 spent on home
remodeling produces 1.11 new jobs.
"If the country can afford to subsidize over a million families
no matter what their income to buy new houses, surely we can afford
to prevent a huge increase in the number of people who lose their
homes altogether and become homeless. I strongly urge the Congress
to reexamine its spending plans in the Economic Recovery bill in
light of this expensive tax cut and do more to help those who are
hurt the most by the economic crisis. It is simple fairness."
For more information, visit www.nlihc.org.

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