HousingFinance.com recently asked readers their thoughts on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds one year later.
Almost half of the respondents—48.6%—said they do not think the ARRA has been effective in jump-starting affordable housing deals across the nation. “The bottleneck at the state level is beyond words,” noted one respondent.
However, 32.4% of respondents said they think the stimulus funds have helped to jump-start projects, while the remaining 18.9% of respondents are still on the fence. “Without the Tax Credit Assistance Program or [credit] exchange, it is unlikely we would have done many, if any, deals. We invested $160 million in 2009,” noted another respondent.
When asked if the federal government needs to do more in 2010 to aid the production of affordable housing, the majority of respondents—72.2%—said yes. Extending the tax credit exchange program, increasing the Community Development Block Grant budget, and cracking down on banks slowing down the process to hold on to money were among the respondents’ suggestions for additional government help in 2010.
However, 25% of respondents said they do not think the industry needs more government assistance, and the remaining 2.8% said they were unsure.