AIMS Update: 'We Live Here' Campaign Moves into Next Phase, Earns Awards Recognition

 

 

 

National Multi Housing Council | AIMS Update
National Multi Housing Council | AIMS Update
October 23, 2013
NAA/NMHC Testify Before Senate on the Need for a Separate Multifamily Finance Reform Solution
"Apartments: We Live Here" Campaign Moves into Next Phase, Earns Awards Recognition
NAA/NMHC Join Coalition in Making Recommendations to HUD for Implementing New Protections for Victims of Domestic Violence
Apartment Industry Opposes Plan to Restrict Multifamily Lending
NAA/NMHC Develop Broad Coalition Principles for Multifamily Housing Finance Reform
NAA NEWS
Funds Available to NAA Affiliated Associations
NAA/NMHC Testify Before Senate on the Need for a Separate Multifamily Finance Reform Solution

Tom Bozzuto, chairman and CEO of The Bozzuto Group, represented NAA/NMHC during a hearing before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs on Oct. 9. The hearing, titled Housing Finance Reform: Essential Elements of the Multifamily Housing Finance System, resulted in frank dialogue between key industry stakeholders and lawmakers about the challenges of moving forward with reforms of the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) to address shortfalls in the single-family mortgage financing system without damaging the well-functioning, $862 billion multifamily mortgage financing system.

Bozzuto’s testimony highlighted elements of the multifamily finance system that have worked well through the last economic cycle—and at no cost to taxpayers—while underscoring the need for a continued federal role in the system even as private capital returns to the sector.

“Private capital should bear the principal risk to protect taxpayers, but history has shown that private capital is unwilling or unable to meet the full financing needs of the multifamily sector, including the $100 billion in mortgages that need to be refinanced each year,” said Bozzuto. 

Click for the full testimony.

NMHC Chairman Tom Bozzuto, chairman and CEO of The Bozzuto Group, testifies before the Senate Banking Committee on housing finance reform.

 
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"Apartments: We Live Here" Campaign Moves into Next Phase, Earns Awards Recognition

To continue the positive momentum created by the initial unveiling of the pro-apartment public relations campaign, “Apartments: We Live Here,” NAA/NMHC have launched a new wave of digital advertising this month on three important online platforms—Real Clear Politics, Google and National Journal—for influencing lawmakers with stakes in housing policy.

The ongoing campaign communicates how apartments work in communities across the country—helping people live in a home that’s right for them, supporting jobs and generating economic activity. The multimedia campaign also includes an interactive website, print media ads, radio spots, online banner ads and direct mail collateral.

NAA/NMHC's high-profile, digital advertising module on National Journal’s website.

Results from the latest round of digital advertising have been strong, particularly with National Journal, where click-through rates from the ads are more than four times industry standards. Driving those high marks at National Journal is NAA/NMHC’s decision to become one of four advertisers to work with a high-profile, “catalyst” execution on the digital advertising, featuring the new campaign video.

As further testament to the campaign’s success, the campaign was selected as a finalist for two significant digital communication awards: the 2013 Public Affairs Campaign of the Year and the 2013 New Site Launch of the Year.

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NAA/NMHC Join Coalition in Making Recommendations to HUD for Implementing New Protections for Victims of Domestic Violence

NAA/NMHC sent a letter on behalf of a group of housing providers to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) with several recommendations to aid the agency in implementing the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013. More specifically, the letter encouraged HUD to consider the following with respect to several of the law’s provisions:

  • Lease bifurcation. In cases where a victim must establish eligibility for housing assistance following a lease bifurcation with the perpetrator, the coalition recommended establishing a 60- to 90-day period for a victim to establish eligibility under a new or existing housing program or find alternative housing.
  • Notification. The coalition urged HUD to allow new notifications to be incorporated into existing standard program documents and materials provided to residents to reduce redundancy.
  • Documentation. The coalition asked for HUD’s guidance and forms to reflect housing providers’ ability to require third-party certification when there is conflicting evidence of domestic violence.
  • Emergency Transfer Plans. As HUD develops a model plan, the coalition urged the agency to recognize the differing characteristics, roles and capabilities of various housing providers and property types and provide guidance for use in situations where it is not feasible for a public housing authority or private owner or manager to effectuate a transfer.

A full copy of the letter is available.

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Apartment Industry Opposes Plan to Restrict Multifamily Lending

On Oct. 8, NAA/NMHC submitted extensive comments in two letters to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) opposing a recent proposal to further reduce Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s presence in the multifamily housing markets. This latest move follows the regulator’s March mandate of a 10 percent reduction in the GSEs’ multifamily lending activities this year.

NAA/NMHC comments noted that, while the industry shares the regulator’s desire to see more robust private capital participation in the market, such competition is already happening without arbitrary caps on the GSEs’ lending. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s share of new multifamily mortgages dropped from 85 percent in 2009 to just 43 percent in 2012 as a result of market dynamics, and indications point to a further drop in 2013. 

NAA/NMHC noted that there are market-based or credit risk reasons to justify federal involvement and that FHFA should avoid short circuiting the congressional debate on housing finance reform currently underway. 

Read the NAA/NMHC's comment letter and coalition letter.

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NAA/NMHC Develop Broad Coalition Principles for Multifamily Housing Finance Reform

Joining a diverse group of housing lenders, owners, operators and developers, NAA/NMHC recently helped develop a coalition document that encourages policymakers to address the needs of the multifamily sector as a fundamental component of any reform of the housing finance system and the activities of the GSEs and outlines five common principles for multifamily finance reform:

1.  The nation’s multifamily finance system should rely on private capital.

2.  The federal government is the only entity that can ensure the availability of liquidity in all market cycles.

3.  The government should ensure liquidity for multifamily mortgages through a carefully crafted guarantee on multifamily mortgage-backed securities.

4.  Taxpayers and the mortgage finance system itself should be protected through a strong regulatory framework and multiple layers of private capital.

5.  Policymakers should protect and preserve existing resources, as well as support greater transparency, during the transition to an overhauled housing finance system.

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NAA NEWS
Funds Available to NAA Affiliated Associations

NAA has several funds available to its affiliated associations to support and cultivate membership and help support advocacy efforts.

NAA Affiliate Assistance Fund (AAF)

The purpose of the NAA Affiliate Assistance Fund (AAF) is to support non-government affairs-related projects of significant importance to NAA affiliates. Examples of items for which AAF funds may be used include operating expenses incurred to improve delivery of member services (i.e. purchasing membership database software, membership communications software and professional services, educational programming on local ordinances, regulations and issues that are specific to the affiliate, and/or membership recruiting activities that would otherwise not qualify for funding under NAA’s Strategic Growth or other initiative.) For more information on the AAF, contact NAA’s Valerie Sterns.

Industry Mobilization Fund (IMF)

Supporting advocacy efforts to address issues of major significance to the apartment industry that may have national implications if not successfully addressed is the purpose of the NAA Industry Mobilization Fund (IMF). Proposals for IMF funding may be submitted by an NAA Affiliate, the Board of Directors, the Legislative Committee or NAA staff. Examples of items for which IMF funds may be used include:

  • State and local advocacy campaigns (e.g. defeating rent control regulation, inspection ordinances, building code retrofit requirements),
  • National advocacy efforts, not currently supported adequately through NAA’s government affairs program,
  • Public opinion polling (e.g. support for higher rents in exchange for greater energy efficiency in apartments), or
  • Research projects; the results of which could be utilized nationally in a positive way (i.e. alternatives to sprinkler retrofit mandates or economic impacts of rent control).

IMF awards cannot be used to fund campaign contributions to any individual running for elected office. In addition, any activities in conflict with NAA policy positions will not be funded.  Requests for legal action or support (e.g. NAA bringing litigation or filing amicus briefs on behalf of an affiliate), are currently addressed and funded separately, outside of the IMF. For more information about the IMF, contact NAA’s Greg Brown.

For information or to apply for funding, visit the Affiliate Funding Page.
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AIMS

AIMS is the apartment industry's grassroots network operating under NAA and NMHC's Joint Legislative Program. AIMS represents more than 58,000 multifamily housing advocates.

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