Housing/Mortgages

Housing/Mortgages

The federal government has been involved in housing since the formation of a Congressional commission in 1892 to investigate slum conditions in the nation’s cities.   During WWI and WWII the federal government constructed and managed housing for defense workers and military personnel.  Since the National Housing Act was signed into law by FDR in 1934 the federal government has helped middle and working class families acquire home loans through regulation of savings and loan industry, subsidized loans and other mechanisms. These policies have transformed and dramatically expanded the opportunity for homeownership and helped to create the middle class in the U.S.

Cry Wolf Quotes

What is more, I do not believe that the home-owning family, with its back against the wall, fighting for the protection of its children, fighting for a way to live in some other way than on Mr. Hopkins’ relief rolls is going to jeopardize the family shelter for any such purpose. I think it is nothing short of a crime to use the money of the taxpayers to incite people to go into debts they do not know how they are going to meet and by which they are going further to jeopardize the family shelter.

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Miss Marie L. Obenauer, Joint Chairman, Board of Governors of Home Owners’ Protective Enterprise, Testimony. Committee on Banking and Currency. Senate.
05/18/1934 | Full Details | Law(s): National Housing Act

I do not see that it is the function of Congress to tell me whether I shall take a straight loan or whether I shall take an amortized loan. It does not make any difference to me whether you tell it to me in blunt terms through officials here in Washington, or whether you so rig the financial market that I must steer the course that you lay out for me. I do not think that we ought to expect such legislation from legislators who represent a party that stands for initiative, for the rights of the States, and the rights of the community. I do not think we are going to get it from them.

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Miss Marie L. Obenauer, Joint Chairman, Board of Governors of Home Owners’ Protective Enterprise, Testimony. Committee on Banking and Currency. Senate.
05/18/1934 | Full Details | Law(s): National Housing Act

This act would affect building conditions in my State. While in many districts the population is quite dense, the districts are widely scattered. The irrigation districts are densely populated, but then there will be wide areas where there is practically no population at all. When you limit the radius to 50 miles you are putting out of business a good many of our building and loan associations because they cannot operate in an area supported by the business they will have in the small areas covered in this bill.

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Hon. Compton I. White, Idaho Congressman , Testimony, Committee on Banking and Currency. House.
05/18/1934 | Full Details | Law(s): National Housing Act

I say that when you set up that type of corporation and you set up that sort of insurance company and operate it in the manner proposed, you are going to close every building association in the United States. They cannot survive under it to save their souls. This is the heart of this whole bill.

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Harry E. Karr, Real Estate Board of Baltimore, Testimony, Committee on Banking and Currency. Senate.
05/16/1934 | Full Details | Law(s): National Housing Act

Evidence

Backgrounders & Briefs

Good Rules: Ten Stories Of Successful Regulation

Demos looks at ten laws and rules that we take for granted.

Community Reinvestment Act Policy Brief

By Philip Ashton, UIC

The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) has been critical to the expansion of responsible credit for low- and moderate-income borrowers since its passage in 1977.

Resources

The Center for Responsible Lending promotes and advocates legislation to defend lower income Americans from abusive or predatory lending practices.