For a year, NMHC has been at the forefront of calling on policymakers to pass legislation providing assistance to residents and property owners, including rental assistance.
At the onset of the pandemic, NMHC called on lawmakers to enact a number of provisions that would provide assistance to renters and property owners affected by financial hardships as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. Many of our proposals were incorporated into relief initiatives—including the CARES Act, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, and the American Rescue Plan Act. These packages provided desperately needed support for residents and housing providers and helped maintained the stability of the industry.
The American Rescue Act capped off a year of dedicated COVID advocacy efforts. The legislation’s $40 billion in money specific to rental housing represents an unprecedented investment in housing.
Importantly, the Consolidated Appropriations Act allocated $25 billion to the Treasury Department to create a new Emergency Rental Assistance program and the American Rescue Plan Act allocated another $24.7 billion to the program. Taken together, this represents one of the largest ever investments in the nation’s housing. Eligible households may receive up to 12 months of assistance, plus an additional three months if necessary. This program will be administered by Treasury. The funds are provided directly to States, U.S. Territories, local governments, and Indian tribes. Grantees use the funds to provide assistance to eligible households through existing or newly created rental assistance programs. Access NMHC’s Rental Assistance FAQ for updates on the implementation of these funds.
This assistance is crucial to ensuring housing stability as the pandemic continues. As we continue to navigate the pandemic and Congress looks at additional relief, NMHC will make the case for additional, critically needed emergency relief for the rental industry, housing professionals and our residents.
NMHC is the voice of the apartment industry in Washington, D.C. – a role we don’t take lightly.
After all, decisions in Washington not only affect your organization’s bottom line, but also the safety and security of your employees and residents. The NMHC Government Affairs Team has spent countless hours working on your behalf since the onset of this crisis – read on to see the highlights of what we’ve been working on.
What we are working on now
With a new Administration in the White House and the 117th Congress in session, policymakers are continuing to respond to the pandemic. While we were pleased that Congress included addition unemployment benefits, new stimulus checks and $24.7 billion for rental assistance in the most recent relief package, we remain concerned that this may not be sufficient. That’s why NMHC is in constant communication with lawmakers on several provisions important to the multifamily and its residents – including the following:
Ensure the efficient and timely execution and implementation of the $50 billion Emergency Rental Assistance Program and secure appropriate additional financial assistance for renters to relieve past due rent, stabilize their housing going forward and ensure the survival of housing providers.
End the use of federal eviction moratoriums which does nothing to address the underlying financial distress of renters and could have long-term implications for the stability of the housing industry.
Enact targeted COVID-19 liability protections for housing providers who, despite doing their best to follow applicable public health guidelines, could face an onslaught of frivolous lawsuits and additional financial stress.
Last updated: April 2021
- CDC Releases Updated Eviction Moratorium FAQs
- Real Estate Coalition Letter to Treasury Regarding Federally Assisted Housing Program Recipients' Rental Assistance Eligibility
- Industry Calls On States to Administer Rental and Business Assistance Funds
- NMHC Urges Treasury to Streamline Rental Assistance Program and Expand Eligibility
- Real Estate Coalition Letter to State Lawmakers on Emergency Rental Assistance Allocation