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Research

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Our goal is to make every place a community of opportunity. Unfortunately, some areas are being left behind more than others as our global and national economies continue to shift. Rural communities are among them. 


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Our Catalytic Grant Program was inspired by our mission to support efforts to build vibrant local communities that provide equitable opportunities for people to thrive. Noting that even years after the Great Recession had officially ended, many communities across the United States were still suffering from housing disinvestment, foreclosures and concentrated poverty, we set out to create a program that could build on the assets in these communities, strengthening the capacity of local organizations to tackle complex issues. 


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The places where we live, work, learn and play critically impact our health and well-being. In many places across the United States, there is significant variation in life expectancy between neighboring geographic areas. Housing, in particular, affects health. Through this survey, we analyze health activities and highlight areas with potential to catalyze partnerships between community development and health organizations. 


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Neighborworks America

Innovations in single-family home construction are badly needed. Studies show that every county in the U.S. is facing an affordable housing shortage. Homeownership is increasingly out of reach for many would-be first-time homebuyers, and if younger couples and families can afford to purchase their own home, they increasingly have to wait longer to buy or lower their expectations.


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As part of our rural initiative, we outlined best practices in rural rehab construction management that categorize, analyze and correlate diverse rehab management practices gathered from rural housing rehab organizations across the United States. 

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Recognizing the importance of rehab work for housing preservation and the difficulty of running a sustainable rehab line of business, we gathered a cross-section of experts from our network to form a year-long rural rehab task force. They provided recommendations on how NeighborWorks can better support rehab in training, technical assistance and resource allocation. 


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Ten certifications to consider when rehabilitating homes in rural communities.


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Neighborworks America
Now that many low-income housing tax credit properties are being built or renovated to higher energy standards, many owners and managers find that traditional tenant utility allowance models are overestimating electricity, fuel and water consumption. Excessive utility allowances discourage residents from conserving energy and reduces property value. 

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Affordable housing units are increasingly lost or at risk of losing government subsidies, and naturally-occurring affordable housing untis are likely to be used to serve higher-income households. This report highlights 16 leading efforts and innovative approaches to preserve affordable housing, including below-market debt funds, private equity vehicles, and real estate investment trusts.

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Neighborworks America
Sam LaTronica, candidate in Urban Planning at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, presented innovative case studies in affordable single-family home construction, including goals, positive outcomes, and lessons learned.

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