Americans for Financial Reform - News Release: Report Exposes How Real Estate Industry Maintains Housing Crisis

CALIFORNIA - An intricate network of housing industry groups, often backed by corporate landlords, are actively blocking solutions that would alleviate the worst aspects of the current housing crisis and improve affordability, according to a new report.

The report, from Capital Strategies for the Common Good, the Private Equity Stakeholder Project, Bargaining for the Common Good, and Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund, sheds light on the money behind the political influence that has distorted the politics of housing in favor of wealthy interests, partly in response to a recent surge in tenant organizing at local, state, and federal levels that has begun to challenge the status quo.

“Corporate landlords do not merely profit off of the housing crisis to the tune of billions of dollars,” said Dustin Duong, research associate at Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund. “They then plow that money into lobbying efforts that stall or bury efforts to relieve the crisis. It is a vicious circle of money, politics, and industry influence.”

“Californians consistently identify high housing costs and homelessness as two of the top issues they want to see lawmakers address,” said Christina Livingston, Executive Director of the Alliance of Californians For Community Empowerment (ACCE). “However, to date, state and local governments have failed to pass policies or make investments commensurate with the scale of the problem. Why? One of the major reasons is the powerful and deep-pocketed corporate real estate lobby led by the California Apartment Association (CAA). While the CAA often claims to represent mom-and-pop landlords, the CAA’s agenda primarily serves their Wall Street corporate landlord leadership. The business model of these mega-corporate landlords is predicated on increasing profits at all costs by raising rents, neglecting maintenance, and evicting frequently – to the detriment of our cities, our communities, and our families.”

To read the full press release click here.