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America's Affordable Communities Initiative

Bringing homes within reach through regulatory reform

The United States is the best-housed nation in the world, yet millions of hard-working American families struggle to find homes and apartments within their budgets. They are often forced to commute long distances, live in sub-standard housing, or live in over-crowded conditions due to exclusionary, discriminatory, and/or unnecessary regulations that drive up costs that are eventually passed on to the consumer.

Over the years, HUD has found that regulations such as out-of-date building codes, duplicative or time-consuming design review or approval processes, burdensome rehabilitation codes, restrictive or exclusionary zoning ordinances, unnecessary or excessive fees or taxes, extreme environmental restrictions, and excessive or "gold-plated" land development standards, all contribute to higher housing costs and production delays.

For middle-income individuals such as teachers, firefighters, police officers, nurses, service sector employees and others, barrier removal is an integral component of meeting their housing needs. By reducing development costs by as much as 35 percent through the removal of affordable housing barriers, millions of American families will be able to buy or rent suitable housing that they otherwise could not afford.

Content Archived: April 9, 2010

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U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
451 7th Street S.W.
Washington, DC 20410
Telephone: (202) 708-1112 TTY: (202) 708-1455