HUD No. GFO-08-07
Christian Stearns, Field Office Director
(336) 547-4001 ext. 2064
September 10, 2008
HUD BRINGS AMERICA'S AFFORDABLE COMMUNITIES INITIATIVE TO NORTH CAROLINA
Bringing homes within reach through regulatory reform
GREENSBORO - 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.
According to a report issued by the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency, it is estimated that approximately 600,000 households are still struggling with housing. Major housing problems are reflected by the fact that housing costs have increased 8.8% for renters and 14% for homeowners in 58 counties, that families with two full-time workers earning minimum wage cannot afford to rent a two-bedroom at Fair Market Rent and that half of low-
income households pay more than 30% of their income for housing.
Over the years, HUD has found that regulations such as out-of-date building codes, duplicative or time-consuming design review or approval processes, burdensome rehabilitation codes, restrictive or exclusionary zoning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.
The Greensboro HUD Office will be hosting a one-day symposium to address these barriers to affordable housing in North Carolina. The symposium will be held at the Koury Convention Center, Sheraton, in Greensboro on September 17, 2008 from 8:00 am until 5:00 pm. Interested parties can get more information and register for this event online
at, or by calling (336) 547-4000 ext. 2064.
America’s Affordable Communities Initiative (AACI) National Call to Action campaign is designed to create a national network of states, communities, and affordable housing advocacy groups who pledge to regulatory reform, and by doing so, strengthen the national commitment to providing affordable housing for America's workforce. AACI’s
National Call to Action has enlisted over 140 states and communities that have committed to examining their regulatory environments in order to produce more workforce housing.
HUD is the nation’s housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities;
creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development and enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the
Internet and espanol.hud.gov.