We are currently in the middle of a housing crisis.
These bold words were penned by Mortgage Bankers Association President and CEO David Stevens in a recent blog post on LinkedIn.
Before assuming the definition of “housing crisis,” Stevens said that while industry experts, economists and even consumer groups have predicted one would emerge, this is not what they expected and it is certainly sooner than anticipated.
Stevens begins by painting a picture of what housing looks like now.
Yes, the word crisis is harsh and alarmist, but it accurately reflects the complete void of focus on housing as an opportunity by Washington policy makers, including the actions of the regulators and enforcement officials that are narrowing the credit box. Fact - there is a shortage of affordable housing (both rental and owned) and the homeownership rate today is at its lowest point in over two decades. Today's environment is not encouraging credit expansion. It's forcing lenders to be overly conservative - ultimately failing entry-level homeowners on every front.
Included is Stevens' call to acton, with none other than President Barack Obama at the top of the list of people who can start fixing the problem.
It's time to acknowledge the flaws in policy, corrections needed to the rules, and the impacts of going too far. And it starts at the top.