In an insightful commentary in Forbes, Redfin Chief Economist Nela Richardson notices something from last night's State of the Union that few have remarked on – the future role of housing.

What has been permanently altered, however, is the White House practice of escalating affordable housing goals for Fannie and Freddie to increase middle-class homeownership. In a speech packed with policy aimed at middle class economics, homeownership received barely a mention — and that is the true legacy of the financial crisis.

For almost 20 years we’ve had housing policy in which affordable access to homeownership through purchase goals for Fannie and Freddie was a central tenant of middle-class economics.

Last night we heard a quiet, and perhaps permanent, shift in that approach. Homeownership used to be the means by which middle class economic security was obtained; from now on it will be the ends by which that economic security is measured

Richardson is featured in HousingWire Magazine's February issue, in a story about new economic models and voices that are shaking up the status quo. Read "The New Wave of Economists," available Feb. 1. by subscribing here.