Delaware State Housing Authority (DSHA) along with Governor Markell and their partners today held the 2012 Governor's Conference on Housing. The event brought together over 400 housing professionals and residents from throughout Delaware and surrounding states to discuss important issues in housing ranging from homeownership, affordable rental housing, special needs populations and other hot topics. Attendees had the opportunity to discuss regional, state and local perspectives on today's affordable housing climate, and the event provided strategies to address current and future housing needs.
"Under Governor Markell's leadership, Delaware has made important progress as we work to help homeowners stay in their homes and heal our housing market," said Shaun Donovan, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development, the conference Keynote Speaker. "But even as homeowners begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel and emerge from this crisis, what makes Delaware unique is its ability to not just tackle the challenges of the crisis at hand, but to build the stronger, more inclusive communities we need in a 21st century global economy -- and an economy built to last."
"Affordable housing drives our economy and builds our communities," said Governor Jack Markell. "Homeownership not only needs to be affordable; it needs to be sustainable. We are making sure we have the programs and policies in place to help people with any challenges in homeownership, home equity or rental housing. We know how important it is to Delawareans to strengthen our housing market while ensuring people have access to affordable housing."
Preeminent national economist Dr. David Crowe discussed national housing trends that impact the affordable housing industry in the opening plenary. Additionally, attendees had the opportunity to discuss a recent study released by the Delaware Housing Coalition that shows that assisted multifamily rental housing more often than not has a positive impact on home values in the neighborhoods in which they are located, contrary to what many have come to believe. The report also cited that the rehabilitation of existing multifamily rental properties can provide an immediate 20% positive movement in the value of surrounding homes, an effort that is a priority in DSHA's mission.
"Housing is the cornerstone to providing working, viable communities and to building Delaware's economy," said DSHA director Anas Ben Addi. "The topics covered today at the conference shed some light and brought some attention to the housing environment throughout the nation and how it affects us here in the First State."
Topics covered at the conference ranged in scope from trends in housing including homeownership, special needs housing, multifamily housing and affordable housing to foreclosure and controlling affordable housing development costs. Additionally, Senator Tom Carper and Congressman John Carney joined Governor Markell and Secretary Donovan, as well as Van Gottel of Socialserve.org, to address attendees during lunch. DSHA has worked closely with Socialserve.org to launch DelawareHousingSearch.org, a free web-based service that allows landlords to provide details on their multifamily rental units and Delawareans to search for the home that fits their needs.
About the Delaware State Housing Authority
The Delaware State Housing Authority (DSHA), formed in 1968, is dedicated to providing quality, affordable housing opportunities and appropriate supportive services to low- and moderate-income Delawareans. In addition to its role as the State's Housing Finance Agency, DSHA is unique in that it is also serves as a Public Housing Authority and acts as a Community Development and Planning Agency. As a Public Housing Authority, DSHA receives funding from HUD to build, own and operate public housing in Kent and Sussex counties, two of Delaware's three counties. For more information about the Delaware State Housing Authority, please call: (302) 739-4263 or visit our website at: www.destatehousing.com.