A diverse group of 40 housing organizations is urging President Biden to establish a President’s Council on Housing Affordability.

Maksym Yemelyanov/Adobe Stock

“Despite gains in levels of building both single-family and multifamily homes, housing prices are rising rapidly,” reads the letter to Biden. “Driven by more than a decade of housing production deficits, supply shortages, rising labor and material costs, and pandemic-related supply chain issues, the cost of shelter is less affordable for everyone across the income spectrum, particularly for those least able to afford it.”

The group notes that the primary tool to curb inflation is to increase interest rates, negatively affecting housing affordability. While raising interest rates may be necessary to control inflation, higher rates “increase the cost to build, preserve, and operate rental housing as well,” says the letter.

The organizations call for Biden to convene a President’s Council on Housing Affordability composed of external stakeholders and officials from the departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, Treasury, and Veterans Affairs to develop practical, interagency solutions.

Supporters include the National Housing Conference, California Housing Partnership, Housing Partnership Network, Mortgage Bankers Association, National Alliance to End Homelessness, National Association of Home Builders, National Association of Realtors, National Council of State Housing Agencies, National Leased Housing Association, National Multifamily Housing Council, New York Housing Conference, and Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Future.

For more, read the full letter.