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Rise of the Renter Nation: Solutions to the Housing Affordability Crisis

June 1, 2014

Private homeownership cannot serve as our only model for decent, stable housing. While the most recent speculative bubble raised the proportion of homeowners nationwide to 70 percent of all households, this gain was an illusion that vanished as the market collapsed. A longer view reveals that for three decades before the bubble began in the mid-1990s, homeownership rates hovered around 64 percent, despite massive federal and market support. Further, the historic average obscures important and severe racial disparities in homeownership rates, which have never exceeded 50 percent for black and Latino populations. Yet, policy and even much of the progressive analysis of the housing crisis seem incapable of acknowledging -- much less acting on -- these realities. The result is a national dialogue about the housing crisis that all but ignores the growing renter class, where the crisis is concentrated, and retains a myopic focus on private ownership. The following report is a reality check. It attempts to redirect the conversation and provide an agenda for genuine housing security for all.

People Without Homes and Homes Without People: A Count of Vacant Condos in Select NYC Neighborhoods

May 17, 2010

Documents the number of vacant luxury condominiums being kept off the market in six New York City areas. Outlines current programs and community-based policy recommendations to provide affordable housing, including penalties, incentives, and subsidies.

Right to the City: New York City Policy Platform

September 2, 2009

To address the gaps in PlaNYC and to create a set of economic development principles rooted in community needs, RTTC-NYC developed this citywide, grassroots policy platform. This platform unites the demands of the RTTC-NYC member groups related to community development, gentrification and displacement. The goal of the platform is to help build the power of low-income people of color in urban areas and to create urban policy that is central to the needs of low-income people. It is the result of an in-depth, collaborative, and participatory process, which included all the RTTC-NYC member-based organizations.