In this issue’s section of “Industry Voices,” one of our features is an open letter that a magazine contributor, Brian Wojcik of, sent the secretary of housing and urban development (HUD), Ben Carson. Wojcik provided plenty of context for his letter in terms of legislation and policy revolving around landlords, but we wanted to provide a slightly broader overview of HUD activity in the past 10 months.

Think Realty Magazine makes no political statements or judgements on any policies proposed or enacted. While not a comprehensive timeline, this list highlights monthly activity for the purpose of education and context.

March: New Leadership and Budget Rumors

Retired pediatric neurosurgeon Ben Carson took his position as HUD Secretary and arrived at the Department of Housing and Urban Development headquarters for his first day of work on March 6, 2017, amid rumors that the next federal budget would cut about $7 billion from HUD’s operating budget, nearly 15 percent.

April: $4 Billion Benchmark Reached in Public-Private Investment in Distressed Public Housing

On May 11, 2017, HUD announced that its Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD), a tool intended to help public housing authorities find funding to preserve and improve public housing properties in order to create more affordable housing, surpassed $4 billion in capital investments.

June: Additional $163 Million to Disaster Recovery

In June 2017, HUD allocated an additional $163 million to help Louisiana, West Virginia, Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida recover from 2015 and 2016 disasters. This allocation stemmed from the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017 that included $400 million “to support recovery from major disasters in 2015 and later.” In total, HUD has invested about $3 billion in these areas’ disaster recovery efforts to date.

July: Billions Allocated to Housing Counseling, Homeless Programs

In July, HUD announced it would allocate $2 billion to local homeless programs and $50 million toward housing counseling grants. In August, HUD allocated an additional $179 million to state recovery from 2015 and 2016 disasters.

August: A New Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, Hurricane Harvey Assistance, and a Statement on Tax Reform

Former HUD director for the Center for Faith-based and Community Initiatives and HUD assistant secretary for grant programs in the Office of Community Planning and Development Anna Maria Farías was sworn in as HUD’s assistant secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity in August 2017. That month, HUD allocated $38 million to fight housing discrimination, awarded disaster assistance in Texas and West Virginia, and allocated $5 million to support safety and security in public housing. Carson also issued a statement in support of President Trump’s proposed tax reforms, encouraging the federal government to “fix our broken tax code…[to] promote strong job and wage growth, putting more money in the pockets of Americans of modest means.”

Tags | HUD
  • Carole VanSickle Ellis

    Carole VanSickle Ellis serves as the news editor and COO of Self-Directed Investor (SDI) Society, a membership organization dedicated to the needs of self-directed investors interested in alternative investment vehicles, including real estate. Learn more at or reach Carole directly by emailing

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