Millennials! Power Up at the Local Level!
Ep. 17 - Conrad Egan, directly involved in affordable housing for many years, says, "The future of housing must change." Conrad urges millennials to take power with local governments and push back against resistance to new approaches and an outdated affinity for the single-family home.
- The underutilization of the voucher program and other subsidized programs
- How the vouchers were turned into loan-management-setaside which resulted in saving hundreds of multifamily units
- A list of national advocacies organizations that exist today and their significance in affordable housing
- Why no more tools are required - just the opportunities to develop affordable housing
- How the millennials are suffering under the old-school zoning that is no longer applicable
Hear the major challenges facing the sector today that are hindering more development.
"I am firmly convinced that things are not going to change until we have what I refer to as the revolt of the millennials."
Conrad serves on the Boards of the Northern Virginia Affordable Housing Alliance and the Affordable Housing Conference of Montgomery County. He was the Chairman of the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority, the CEO of the National Housing Conference, and the Executive Director of the Congressionally appointed Millennial Housing Commission. He served for 20 years as an executive in the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development. He was the Executive Vice President of the National Corporation for Housing Partnerships for 7 years and a long time Director and Chairman of the Community Preservation and Development Corporation. He was named to the Affordable Housing Hall of Fame in 2008.
Conrad Egan was in charge of Asset Management of the FHA multifamily insured and subsidized portfolio at HUD. He talks about the struggle to get owners to perform. The low-income housing tax credit program changed the dimension because investors who purchased the tax credits were subject to a heavy tax loss if regulatory violations or foreclosure occurred. The enforcement problems disappeared.
He talks about a decision that HUD Secretary Carla Hills made that saved hundreds of multifamily properties from default and foreclosure. Those decisions, including the low-income tax credits, contributed to the success of the housing finance agencies.
With 20 years of service to HUD and ongoing work with housing agencies in Northern Virginia, he points to communities that are embracing greater density to provide more housing at lower costs. Egan cites communities like Minneapolis and his own Northern Virginia region as places that are taking new approaches, so those in the economic middle are not squeezed out of the opportunity for home ownership.
Listen to the tremendous progress the subsidized housing sector has made through the eyes of someone who experienced the change.
He shares the history of the preservation and production of affordable housing from back in the 1960s to now [2:23]
He tells stories of some of the secretaries and congress people he worked with during his career, especially at HUD [17:27]
The challenge of zoning laws that are preventing the development and efficient use of land today [20:38]
What advice would he give young people who want to join the affordable housing sector [30:35]