The Need for Inclusionary Housing


As the improving economy allows American cities to renovate and rebuild, existing home prices consequently rise, and in many cities flagrantly price out low-income families. This phenomenon has led to segregated communities, and has behooved inclusionary measures to ensure integration in American neighborhoods.

In July, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) released the Obama administration’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule, intended to put an end to segregated housing. Under this rule, communities receiving HUD funding will also be given assistance in performing fair housing responsibilities and guidance in local decision-making on fair housing issues.

In a recent report titled, Inclusionary Housing: Creating and Maintaining Equitable Communities, the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy presents inclusionary housing methods as capable solutions to ensuring all Americans enjoy the benefits of an improving economy.

The study affirms, “More than 500 communities have developed inclusionary housing policies, which require developers of new market-rate real estate to provide affordable units as well. Economically diverse communities not only benefit low-income households; they enhance the lives of neighbors in market-rate housing as well. To realize the full benefit of this approach, however, policies must be designed with care.”

The report details the fair housing process, and provides case studies in which inclusionary housing strategies have been adopted, both successfully and difficultly. As is evidenced by the Lincoln Institute, the process of inclusionary housing is unique to each city, and while it may not be a simple undertaking, it is certainly a necessary one. Economic restoration should affect the country as whole, just as the economic recession did.

The movement to end segregated housing is ongoing, and with initiatives like HUD’s and those outlined in this recent report, its widespread success is only a matter of time.

To learn more about these inclusionary housing measures and read the Lincoln Institute’s full report, please click here.

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