Results of the Insider’s ‘3-Minute’ 2017 Assisted Housing Survey

Earlier this month the Insider conducted an informal reader survey to find out what changes assisted housing professionals expect with the new administration. We received 188 responses. A PDF showing the full results in chart and table form is available here. Highlights are:

  • Regarding changes in HUD funding, roughly 35% of respondents expect HUD’s budget to decrease by 5 – 10% in the next fiscal year; 25.5% expect HUD’s budget to remain the same; 17% expect it to decrease by 10 – 20%; 16.5% expect it to decrease by more than 20%, and just under 6% expect it to increase.
  • Respondents indicated that the top causes of budgetary concerns at their sites are: increasing maintenance and repair needs (70%); increasing personnel costs (54%); increasing vendor/contractor costs (51%); and reduced or delayed subsidy payments (49.5%). In addition to the choices offered, some of the “other” causes of budgetary concerns that respondents wrote in include: HUD delays in processing contract renewals; overbuilding of units in the area; vacancies; utility costs; increasing water and sewer rates; and changing and confusing regulations that require additional training, travel, and implementation costs.
  • When asked which, if any, recent HUD regulations/initiatives they expect the new administration to roll back, 50% of respondents thought the fair housing guidance on the use of criminal records is likely to be reversed. The Affirmatively Further Fair Housing Rule was regarded the next most likely to be rolled back (43%), followed by the Equal Access Rule (37%), and HUD’s Smoke-Free Rule (17%). Approximately 20% do not expect any of these initiatives to be rolled back. (Note, however, that the “none of the above” option wasn’t available to the first 32 respondents, so that percentage may be higher.)
  • Most respondents (41%) expect less scrutiny from the new administration when it comes to fair housing enforcement, compared to those expecting more scrutiny (24%) and no change (35%).
  • Regarding the level of scrutiny the administration devotes to HUD audits and HQS inspections, most respondents expect no change (41% and 47%, respectively), compared to those expecting more or less scrutiny.
  • When asked how likely they think HUD is to impose work requirements and time limits on subsidized housing, 38% of respondents said very likely; 44% said somewhat likely; and 18% said that’s unlikely.
  • Regarding how likely respondents think HUD is to implement flat-rate rents to beneficiaries, 54% said it was unlikely; 31% said somewhat likely; and 14% said very likely.