Thursday, September 24, 2020

What is HUD and What Does it Do?


You’ve probably heard of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, or HUD. However, like many government programs and agencies, you may be unclear about what role it plays, and what actions it has the power to undertake. Let’s look at what HUD is, and what it can do for members of the American public. 

Provide and Subsidize Public Housing

HUD is a federal agency overseen by a cabinet-level Secretary. Its primary function is to provide housing to people who might otherwise go without, who are eligible under HUD screening criteria. This often comes in the form of housing projects, or public housing, but it also includes Section 8 subsidizing of rent for low-income individuals or families. 

Insure Mortgage Loans

HUD also oversees the Federal Housing Administration, which insures mortgage loans. In essence, a series of grants and loans, like the Ginnie Mae program, makes it possible for people on fixed incomes, or those with low earning ability, to make down payments and secure home loans. 

Monitor Public Education in At-Risk Neighborhoods

The “development” portion of HUD’s charter includes making sure that children in higher-risk neighborhoods receive adequate public education. This is done by monitoring and evaluating standardized test scores and other variables, for statistical purposes and to determine if any appropriate actions or interventions need to be taken. 

Homelessness Relief

While many social services help to alleviate homelessness in major U.S. cities, HUD serves a unique role in helping place homeless people in housing. They oversee several programs from emergency placements to education, rehabilitation, and subsidization efforts that can help get people “off the streets” and onto a better path.

Poverty and homelessness are major issues in America. HUD’s goal is to work to make them less dominant, giving millions of citizens hope and the ability to have safe, secure housing.

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