Will Johnson-Crapo Pass?
It's a multifamily vs single-family showdown: The Johnson-Crapo bill—one of four proposed GSE reforms that would wind down Fannie and Freddie and replace it with a new government agency—is heading to the Senate floor. If multifamily has its way, the bill will pass—the National Multifamily Housing Council and National Apartment Association say the Johnson-Crapo bill retains many of the successful elements of the GSE multifamily programs while protecting taxpayers and encouraging more private capital investment.
But senators like Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass) worry it’s not doing enough for middle-class homebuyers (although a recent Atlantic Cities study found that single-family homes are affordably within reach of the middle class in 80 out of 100 major metros). The Coalition for Mortgage Security is concerned the bill doesn’t protect property rights, and keeps in place mechanisms that could lead to another financial collapse. Multifamily has won the first round by getting the bill to the floor, but single-family may take the bout—many experts are confident it’ll fail in the House if it gets that far. (Do bills get participation trophies?)