Most Clicked Housing Matters SmartBrief Stories


1. Neighborhoods are key to upward mobility, research finds

Housing Matters SmartBrief | May 07, 2015

Poor children who move to lower-poverty neighborhoods have a better shot at escaping poverty, two studies from Harvard have found. "Every extra year of childhood spent in a better neighborhood seems to matter," said Raj Chetty, the lead author on both studies. One study looked at earnings of more than 5 million Americans, while the second examined earnings of people who were part of the federal Moving to Opportunity program as children. Some say the findings should result in changes to U.S. housing policy and a focus on tackling low upward mobility at the local level. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (05/04) CNNMoney (05/04)


2. 8 communities added to list of HUD Promise Zones

Housing Matters SmartBrief | Apr 30, 2015

The Housing and Urban Development Department announced eight additional Promise Zone locations this week. The program doesn't direct money to the areas, but it gives them an advantage for securing grants and assistance from federal agencies as they work to boost economic activity, improve educational opportunities, enhance health and reduce crime. ABC News (04/28)


3. Evidence mounts on benefits of housing assistance

Housing Matters SmartBrief | May 14, 2015

A growing body of research finds that housing vouchers and other assistance to poor families create long-term improvements in children's lives, writes Jason Furman, chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers. Recent research on the Moving to Opportunity voucher program found that tax revenue generated from participants' higher earnings covered the cost of the program. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (05/11)


4. Rising rents are propping up inflation

Housing Matters SmartBrief | Apr 30, 2015

Rising rents are acting as a major driver of the U.S. inflation rate, even though it remains lower than the Federal Reserve's 2% target. This is one reason that the Fed is unlikely to raise rates in June, as some previously expected. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (04/26)


5. Drop in homeownership increases wealth gap

Housing Matters SmartBrief | May 14, 2015

The wealth gap in the U.S. is growing in part due to more people renting instead of buying homes. Homeowners are seeing their wealth increase as housing prices rise. Meanwhile, renters must absorb increasing rents that eat away their net worth. CNBC (05/07)


6. Report: U.S. wages fall short of rent costs

Housing Matters SmartBrief | May 21, 2015

Workers earning the state or federal minimum wage cannot afford a market-rate one-bedroom apartment in any state in the U.S. unless they work 86 hours per week, finds a report from the National Low Income Housing Coalition. The average U.S. hourly wage falls $4 short of the amount needed to work full time and afford a two-bedroom apartment. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (05/19)


7. How housing quality affects health outcomes

Housing Matters SmartBrief | Apr 30, 2015

Housing quality affects lower-income and special-needs residents' physical and emotional health, financial considerations and educational and professional opportunities, according to a research brief from the National Housing Conference's Center for Housing Policy. National Mortgage Professional (04/22)


8. The man behind the "housing first" model

Housing Matters SmartBrief | May 07, 2015

Sam Tsemberis, a psychologist, began working with mentally ill patients in New York City in the 1990s. His work led him into the world of the chronically homeless, and he and a team -- none of whom had training in homelessness -- pioneered a solution that would become the "housing first" model. The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (05/06)


9. Investments in Baltimore neighborhood didn't pay off

Housing Matters SmartBrief | May 07, 2015

Baltimore's Sandtown-Winchester neighborhood, where Freddie Gray was arrested prior to suffering a fatal injury in police custody, saw an infusion of $130 million in community development funds about 20 years ago. But experts say the investments in housing, schools and health services made little difference to the community, which still struggles with drug problems, violence, poverty and a lack of jobs. The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (05/02)


10. Study finds isolation, hidden health issues in senior housing

Housing Matters SmartBrief | May 21, 2015

Residents tend to hide health problems and isolate themselves when living in multilevel senior housing facilities where worsening health requires moving from independent to assisted-living areas, research finds. Reuters (05/15)




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