Congressional Renters Caucus announces proposals to help renters with rising costs

WASHINGTON DC — The average American who rents their home is now spending more than 30 percent of their income on housing – the mark that was once considered the standard for determining reasonable housing costs.

It’s a problem affecting people living in densely populated cities, to those in rural communities.

Our Washington News Bureau spoke with Noelle Porter, Director of Government Affairs for the National Housing Law Project (NHLP).

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“We absolutely know that across this country there’s not enough affordable housing,” said Porter. “It is making it impossible for renters not only to survive, but to invest and save for the future.”

On Thursday, members of the Congressional Renters Caucus announced a series of more than a dozen bills aimed at helping renters.

The plans include expanding rental assistance, increasing affordable housing and beefing up protections against evictions.

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“If you’re rent burdened, then you can’t save for a home,” said Rep. Jimmy Gomez (D-CA), Chair and Founder of the Congressional Renters Caucus. “You can’t save for college. You can’t save for retirement.”

The measures are backed by Democrats and face an uphill battle in the GOP-led House.

Republicans, meanwhile, have blamed the Biden administration’s economic policies for the housing crisis.

“Families are struggling more than ever to afford their monthly rent and mortgage payment in large part because of Bidenomics,” said Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC).

Gomez said he’s been in talks with Republican colleagues about the proposals, but for now it’s unclear if these bills will get bipartisan support.

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