Policy News from Congress

House Funding Bill Includes Modest Increases for Some Rural Housing Programs, Though Less Than USDA Requested

On June 14, the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee approved a funding bill for fiscal year 2023, which begins on October 1, 2022. The House bill proposes less funding for several rural housing programs than the administration’s budget did, while also rejecting the administration’s cut in Community Facilities guaranteed loans.

The full committee will consider the bill on June 23.

The House would increase the Section 515 rental housing program and the MPR rental preservation program above current levels, but not to the extent proposed by the administration. It would raise the Rural Community Development Initiative capacity building program from this year’s $6 million to $8 million in FY23 rather than the $12 million USDA requested. The rental preservation technical assistance program would receive $2 million again under the House bill, although USDA did not propose any funding for it.

It is not clear whether the bill is intended to fund renewals of the Section 521 Rental Assistance contracts added by the American Rescue Plan Act, but it proposes lower funding for Section 521 than the administration’s budget, which explicitly stated it did include the new contracts. Also, the House bill does not adopt USDA’s proposal to “decouple” the Section 521 Rental Assistance program from the Section 515 and 514/516 programs, which would allow properties to continue to receive Rental Assistance after their USDA mortgages end.

Like USDA’s budget, the House bill would expand USDA’s pilot program for Native American mortgage lending, which provides funds to Native CDFIs to be reloaned to homebuyers.

— HAC’s analysis of FY23 appropriations for HUD is available here.  —

USDA Rural Dev. Prog.

(dollars in millions)

FY21 Final Approp. Amer. Rescue Plan Act FY22 Final Approp. FY23 Budget FY23 House Bill
502 Single Fam. Direct $1,000 $656.6 $1,250 $1,5o0 $1,500
Nat. Amer. Single Fam. Demo 20.8 12
502 Single Family Guar. 24,000 30,000 30,000 30,000
504 VLI Repair Loans 28 18.3 28 50 28
504 VLI Repair Grants 30 32 45 (a)
515 Rental Hsg. Direct Lns. 40 50 200 150
514 Farm Labor Hsg. Lns. 28 28 50 30
516 Farm Labor Hsg. Grts. 10 10 18 16
521 Rental Assistance 1,410 100 1,450 1,564 1,494
523 Self-Help TA 31 32 40 33
533 Hsg. Prsrv. Grants 15 16 30  (a)
538 Rental Hsg. Guar. 230 250 400 300
Rental Prsrv. Demo. (MPR) 28 34 75 40
542 Rural Hsg. Vouchers 40 45 38 38
Rental Prsrv. TA 2 2 0 2
Rural Cmnty. Dev’t Init. 6 6 12 8
Community Facil. Loans 2,800 2,800 2,800 2,800
Community Facil. Grants 32 40 52 195(b)
      Tribal Colleges CF Grts 5 10 10 10
Community Facil. Guarantees 500 650 500 650

(a) The House bill provides a total of $48 million for Section 504 grants and Section 533 grants; it is not clear how this amount would be divided between the two programs. HAC expected that information to be available in the committee report on the bill, but it is not.

(b) The House bill’s CF grants total would include a number of earmarks, which are listed in the committee report.

*   *   *

Budget Requests Increases in Most Rural Housing Programs

The Biden Administration’s budget for fiscal year 2023 proposes funding increases for almost every U.S. Department of Agriculture rural housing program, along with some important program changes for preservation of aging rental housing.

The March 28, 2022 budget release is only the first step in the process of developing federal appropriations for the fiscal year that begins on October 1, 2022. HAC held a webinar to review the budget’s contents and what to expect over the coming months; view the slides and recording here.

Rental Housing

The USDA budget proposes to quadruple Section 515 rental housing from $50 million in FY22 to $200 million in FY23, with the funds to be used for preserving existing Section 515 properties. The Multifamily Preservation and Revitalization program, which finances efforts to upgrade and maintain aging units constructed with Section 515 financing or the Section 514/516 farmworker housing program, would jump from $34 million this year to $75 million in FY23.

Farmworker housing loans and grants would almost double, with $6 million in Section 521 Rental Assistance set aside for new Section 514/516 units. The Section 538 loan guarantee program would see a large increase as well. (Details are provided in the table below.)

The $1.564 billion requested for Section 521 Rental Assistance renewals “will enable 272,000 existing contracts to be renewed, including making permanent the approximately 27,000 units that were brought into the program by the American Rescue Plan Act supplemental funding,” according to USDA’s budget explanation. The same document states, however, that RA assisted 284,194 tenant households in FY21.

The budget also asks Congress to “decouple” Rental Assistance from Section 515. Currently the programs are linked: RA cannot be made available to a property unless it has a USDA Section 515 or 514 loan. Separating them, so that RA could be offered after a property pays off its USDA mortgage, would help keep properties affordable for their tenants.

To protect tenants whose properties leave the USDA portfolio without decoupling, the administration proposes to provide $20 million in HUD Tenant Protection Vouchers. Based on the assumption that decoupling and the availability of HUD vouchers will eliminate the need for new USDA vouchers, the budget requests only enough Section 542 funding to renew existing assistance.

Homeownership

The budget proposes to increase funding for all USDA’s homeownership programs. It would also provide $20.8 million to expand the Native American Section 502 Relending pilot program. The pilot has enabled Native Community Development Financial Institutions to assist Native American homebuyers in tribal communities of South Dakota and North Dakota.

Rural Partnership Program

Pursuing an idea proposed in the Build Back Better Act, which has not been passed by Congress, the budget proposes $39 million for the Rural Partnership Program. In a statement about the budget, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack described it as “a renewed and expanded initiative to leverage USDA’s extensive network of county-based offices to help people in high poverty counties, including energy communities.”

Placemaking

The budget would provide $3 million for the Rural Placemaking Innovation Challenge “to provide planning support, technical assistance, and training to foster placemaking activities in rural communities.” [NOTE: This sentence was corrected on March 29 to say $3 million. When this post was published, it stated incorrectly that the amount was $3 billion.]

Energy Efficiency and Climate Resilience

All USDA housing production would be required to “improve energy or water efficiency, indoor air quality, or sustainability improvements, implement low-emission technologies, materials, or processes, including zero-emission electricity generation, energy storage, building electrification, or electric car charging station installations; or address climate resilience of multifamily properties.”

 

USDA Rural Development State Directors Named

This table identifies State Directors for U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development offices named by the Biden Administration as of May 25, 2022. These positions do not require Senate confirmation.

HAC will keep this list up to date as we learn of new appointments. Please send additions or corrections to HAC staff.

 

STATE STATE DIRECTOR
Alabama (AL) Nivory Gordon, Jr.
Alaska (AK) Julia Hnilicka
Arizona (AZ) Charlene Fernandez
Arkansas (AR) Jill Floyd
California (CA) Maria Gallegos Herrera
Colorado (CO) Armando Valdez
Connecticut (CT) Scott Soares
Delaware (DE) David Baker
Florida (FL) and Virgin Islands (VI) Lakeisha Hood
Georgia (GA) Reggie Taylor
Hawaii (HI) and Western Pacific Chris Kanazawa
Idaho (ID) Rudy Soto
Illinois (IL) Betsy Dirksen Londrigan
Indiana (IN) Terry Goodin
Iowa (IA) Theresa Greenfield
Kansas (KS)
Kentucky (KY) Thomas Carew
Louisiana (LA) Deidre Deculus Robert
Maine (ME) Rhiannon Hampson
Maryland (MD) David Baker
Massachusetts (MA) Scott Soares
Michigan (MI) Brandon Fewins
Minnesota (MN) Colleen Landkamer
Mississippi (MS) Trina George
Missouri (MO) Kyle Wilkens
Montana (MT) Kathleen Williams
Nebraska (NE) Kate Bolz
Nevada (NV) Lucas Ingvoldstad
New Hampshire (NH) Sarah Waring
New Jersey (NJ) Jane Asselta
New Mexico (NM) Patricia Dominguez
New York (NY) Brian Sheldon Murray
North Carolina (NC) Reginald Speight
North Dakota (ND) Erin Oban
Ohio (OH) Jonathan McCracken
Oklahoma (OK) Kenneth Corn
Oregon (OR) Margaret Hoffmann
Pennsylvania (PA) Bob Morgan
Puerto Rico (PR)
Rhode Island (RI) Scott Soares
South Carolina (SC) Saundra Glover
South Dakota (SD) Nikki Gronli
Tennessee (TN) Arlisa Armstrong
Texas (TX)
Utah (UT) Michele Weaver
Vermont (VT) Sarah Waring
Virgin Islands (VI) Lakeisha Hood
Virginia (VA) Perry Hickman
Washington (WA) Helen Price Johnson
West Virginia (WV) Ryan Thorn
Wisconsin (WI) Julie Lassa
Wyoming (WY) Glenn Pauley

 

Fiscal Year 2021 USDA Rural Development Housing Activity Report - Cover

Fiscal Year 2021 USDA Rural Development Housing Activity Report

Since the 1950s, USDA has provided financial assistance for the construction, repair, and affordability of millions of homes for low- and moderate-income rural Americans. USDA accomplishes this activity through its Rural Development (RD) agency. In FY 2021, USDA obligated 139,221 loans, loan guarantees, and grants totaling about $24.2 billion. Since the first USDA housing loan was made (around 1950), the agency has funded the construction, purchase, or repair of over 5.5 million rural housing units representing $384.1 billion.

Beginning in 1978, USDA also provided funding for rental assistance to help tenants better afford to rent housing in agency-financed multi-family housing units. In FY 2021, USDA obligated 291,455 annual units of tenant assistance representing about $1.54 billion through the combined total of the Section 521 Rental Assistance and the Section 542 Rural Housing Voucher programs. Since the late 1970s, USDA has funded over $28.8 billion for rental assistance and tenant vouchers representing nearly 4.4 million annual units.

Download the document.

USDA Housing Activity Report - Fiscal Year 2021

USDA Rural Development Housing Funding Activity: Fiscal Year 2020 Year-End Report

HAC presents an overview of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 USDA Rural Housing program obligation activity in this publication, USDA Rural Development Housing Funding Activity: Fiscal Year 2020 Year-End Report.

Since the 1950s, USDA has provided financial assistance for the construction, repair, and affordability of millions of homes for low- and moderate-income rural Americans. USDA accomplishes this activity through its Rural Development (RD) agency. In FY 2020, USDA obligated 151,876 loans, loan guarantees, and grants totaling about $24.5 billion. Since the first USDA housing loan was made (around 1950), the agency has funded the construction, purchase, or repair of nearly 5.4 million rural housing units representing $360.1 billion.

Beginning in 1978, USDA also provided funding for rental assistance to help tenants better afford to rent housing in agency-financed multi-family housing units. In FY 2020, USDA obligated 248,697 annual units of tenant assistance representing about $1.41 billion through the combined total of the Section 521 Rental Assistance and the Section 542 Rural Housing Voucher programs. Since the late 1970s, USDA funded nearly $27.3 billion for rental assistance and tenant vouchers representing nearly 4.1 million annual units.

USDA Program Obligation Final Report - FY 2020
Policy News from Congress

Some Rural Housing Programs Increase in Omnibus Funding Bill

Information on FY22 HUD funding

UPDATE March 11, 2022 – Both the House and Senate have passed the omnibus bill and President Biden will sign it into law, avoiding a government shutdown and funding federal programs through fiscal year 2022, which ends on September 30, 2022.

March 9, 2022 – Several USDA rural housing programs will receive modest funding increases in the omnibus appropriations bill for fiscal year 2022. The bill’s text, released overnight, does not include the significant boosts for rental housing that were included in House and/or Senate versions, instead compromising on smaller raises.

The bill expands eligibility for Section 542 vouchers, which have previously been available only to tenants living in Section 515 properties where the mortgage has been prepaid since September 30, 2005. This language is revised to apply to tenants in properties where Section 515 loans are “prepaid or otherwise paid off after September 30, 2005″ (emphasis added), potentially extending eligibility to tenants of every property that has left the portfolio since that date. USDA could set some limits on this expansion, as it has for tenants in properties with prepaid mortgages, who can obtain vouchers only if they live in the property on the date the prepayment occurs.

Other provisions in the final bill are retained from past appropriations measures. These include language allowing rental property owners to request 20-year Rental Assistance contracts, subject to appropriations. The bill also retains provisions calling for incentives to nonprofits to preserve rental housing, reuse of recaptured Section 521 Rental Assistance (RA), and use of recaptured RA from farmworker housing in other farmworker housing when possible.

The bill continues the 10-20-30 requirement that at least 10 percent of most USDA Rural Development programs, including most housing programs, be set aside for persistent poverty counties (counties where the poverty rate has been at least 20 percent for 30 years).

The omnibus establishes one new program related to rural housing and community development: an Institute for Rural Partnerships, which “shall dedicate resources to researching the causes and conditions of challenges facing rural areas, and develop community partnerships to address such challenges.” The institute will be housed at the University of Vermont and three land-grant universities to be selected by USDA. Each institution will receive a $10 million grant.

The continuing resolution that currently funds the federal government ends at midnight on March 11. The House is expected to pass the omnibus bill on March 9. Another continuing resolution, lasting just a few days, may be needed to give the Senate enough time to act.

USDA Rural Dev. Prog.

(dollars in millions)

FY20 Final Approp. FY21 Final Approp. Amer. Rescue Plan Act FY22 Admin. Budget FY22 House Bill FY22 Senate Bill FY22 Final
502 Single Fam. Direct $1,000 $1,000 $656.6a $1,500 $1,500 $1,250 $1,250
502 Single Family Guar. 24,000 24,000 30,000 30,000 30,000 30,000
504 VLI Repair Loans 28 28 18.3a 28 28 28 28
504 VLI Repair Grants 30 30 30 40 30 32
515 Rental Hsg. Direct Lns. 40 40 40 40 92 50
514 Farm Labor Hsg. Lns. 28 28 28 28 28 28
516 Farm Labor Hsg. Grts. 10 10 10 15 10 10
521 Rental Assistance 1,375 1,410 100 1,450 1,450 1,450 1,450
523 Self-Help TA 31 31 32 32 32 32
533 Hsg. Prsrv. Grants 15 15 15 25 15 16
538 Rental Hsg. Guar. 230 230 230 230 250 250
Rental Prsrv. Demo. (MPR) 28 28 32 60 32 34
542 Rural Hsg. Vouchers 32 40 45 45 45 45
Rental Prsrv. TA 1 2 0 2 2 2
Rural Cmnty. Dev’t Init. 4 6 6 6 6 6

a. The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 provides $39 million in budget authority to refinance Section 502 direct loans and Section 504 loans for homeowners impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. USDA expects this funding to generate $656.6 million in Section 502 direct loans and $18.3 million in Section 504 loans.

 

August 5, 2021 – The Senate Appropriations Committee passed its FY22 USDA funding bill on August 4. While the House bill proposes a substantial increase in funding for the Multifamily Preservation and Revitalization program, the Senate bill would increase Section 515 funding rather than MPR. The Senate bill suggests increases in some other programs, but most of its figures are lower than the House’s.

The Senate bill would retain a provision in FY21 appropriations law, dropped by the administration’s budget and the House, that allows rental property owners to request 20-year terms for Rental Assistance contracts, subject to annual appropriations. The Senate and House would both keep provisions calling for incentives to nonprofits to preserve rental housing, reuse of recaptured Rental Assistance (RA), and use of recaptured RA from farmworker housing in other farmworker housing when possible, although those were left out of the administration’s budget request.

July 27, 2021 – The House passed H.R. 4502, a “minibus” package of seven appropriations bills, including USDA’s (see table below) and HUD’s.

July 1, 2021 – The full House Appropriations Committee approved its FY22 USDA funding bill on June 30, including increases in some rural housing programs as described below. The bill will be considered later this summer by the full House. The Senate has not yet released a proposal.

The House committee also released its report on the bill, providing additional information and directives from the committee, including a paragraph about farmworker housing.

Farm Labor Housing.—The Committee encourages USDA to explore opportunities to leverage its resources including its Food and Nutrition Programs, Community Facilities Programs, Housing Preservation Grants, and other programs, and to create partnerships with the Department of Labor’s Farmworker Housing outreach and technical assistance program, Health Resources and Services Administration’s Health Center Program, and the Administration for Children and Families Migrant and Seasonal Head Start Program, to coordinate and align resources to address the housing, nutrition and healthcare needs of this vulnerable population of essential workers who play a critical role in America’s food security. The Committee further encourages USDA to explore including service coordinators as an allowable expenditure for farm labor housing projects.

June 24, 2021 – As congressional action begins for fiscal year 2022 federal funding, the House Appropriations Committee has released a bill proposing increases in several of USDA’s rural housing programs.

Like the administration’s budget, the House bill would raise funding for Section 502 direct and guaranteed mortgage loans, Rental Assistance, and self-help housing. While the budget would increase the Multifamily Preservation and Revitalization (MPR) program to $32 million from $28 million in FY21, the House bill would provide a far larger boost, to $65 million. The House would also grow the Section 504 grant program for elderly low-income homeowners and the Section 533 Housing Preservation Grants program.

The House bill retains several provisions that are in current appropriations law but were dropped in the administration’s budget. These call for incentives to nonprofits to preserve rental housing, reuse of recaptured Rental Assistance (RA), and use of recaptured RA from farmworker housing in other farmworker housing when possible. Like the budget, however, it eliminates a provision from the FY20 and FY21 appropriations laws that allowed property owners to request RA contracts with 20-year terms.

The House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee will review the draft bill at a mark-up on June 25, 2021. The full House Appropriations Committee will consider it on June 30. The Senate has not yet begun its appropriations process.

 

USDA Rural Dev. Prog.

(dollars in millions)

FY20 Final Approp. FY21 Final Approp. Amer. Rescue Plan Act FY22 Admin. Budget FY22 House Bill
502 Single Fam. Direct $1,000 $1,000 $656.6a $1,500 $1,500
502 Single Family Guar. 24,000 24,000 30,000 30,000
504 VLI Repair Loans 28 28 18.3a 28 28
504 VLI Repair Grants 30 30 30 c
515 Rental Hsg. Direct Lns. 40 40 40 40
514 Farm Labor Hsg. Lns. 28 28 28 b
516 Farm Labor Hsg. Grts. 10 10 10 b
521 Rental Assistance 1,375 1,410 100 1,450 1,450
523 Self-Help TA 31 31 32 32
533 Hsg. Prsrv. Grants 15 15 15 c
538 Rental Hsg. Guar. 230 230 230 230
Rental Prsrv. Demo. (MPR) 28 28 32 60
542 Rural Hsg. Vouchers 32 40 45 45
Rental Prsrv. TA 1 2 0 2
Rural Cmnty. Dev’t Init. 4 6 6 6

a. The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 provides $39 million in budget authority to refinance Section 502 direct loans and Section 504 loans for homeowners impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. USDA expects this funding to generate $656.6 million in Section 502 direct loans and $18.3 million in Section 504 loans.

b. The House bill provides a total of $17.8 million in budget authority for the Section 514 and 516 farm labor housing programs. When the Appropriations Committee prepares a report on the bill, that document will state the program amounts.

c. The House bill provides a total of $65 million for Section 504 grants and Section 533 grants. When the Appropriations Committee prepares a report on the bill, that document will show how the total is to be divided between the two programs.

 

USDA RD Historic Activity through FY 2020

FMHA/RHS Programs that Construct, Purchase, or Repair Rural Housing Units

— Historic Activity through FY 2020

The Housing Assistance Council has tracked USDA Rural Housing activity for the agency’s Single Family Housing and Multifamily Housing for many years. The Historic Activity report provides data for the number of housing units funded by fiscal year for each of the programs since program inception. The data includes:

  • USDA Programs Which Construct, Purchase or Repair Rural Housing Units
  • Section 502 Direct Homeownership Loan Program Totals, FY 1950 – 2020
  • Section 502 Guaranteed Loan Program Totals, FY 1977 – 2020
  • Section 502 Self-Help Program Total, FY 1966 – 2020
  • Section 504 Very Low-Income Repair Program Totals, FY 1950 – 2020
  • Section 514/516 Farm Labor Housing Loans and Grants, FY 1962 – 2020
  • Section 515 Rural Rental Housing Program Totals, FY 1963 – 2020
  • Section 533 Housing Preservation Grant Program Totals, FY 1986 – 2020
  • Section 538 Guaranteed Multi-Family Housing Loan Program Totals, FY 1996 – 2020
  • Section 521 Rental Assistance Program Totals, FY 1978 – 2020
  • Section 542 Multifamily Housing Voucher Totals, FY 2006 – 2020

These data are updated annually.

Historic_2020
USDA Rural Development Obligations Cover

USDA Rural Development Obligations FY 22- February

USDA Rural Development Obligations Report Cover - FY 2021

As of the end of February, USDA obligated 39,285 loans, loan guarantees, and grants totaling about $7.0 billion. This is $3.3 billion less than obligation levels from this time last year. At that time, there were 60,232 loans, loan guarantees, and grants obligated totaling $10.3 billion.

The agency has been operating under a series of continuing resolutions since the beginning of the fiscal year.

Single Family Housing Program Highlights

The Section 502 Guaranteed loan program, the largest of the Single Family Housing programs, obligated $6.6 billion (35,862 loan guarantees) compared to $9.9 billion (56,221 loan guarantees) last year.

For the Section 502 Direct program, loan obligations totaled $324.5 million (1,678 loans), compared to last year’s obligation level of $356.8 million (1,965 loans.) About 27 percent of the loan dollars went to Very Low-income (VLI) applicants. VLI loans represented nearly 32 percent of the total number of Section 502 Direct loans.

The Section 504 Repair and Rehabilitation programs obligated 638 loans representing $4.1 million. Loan volume was up from this time last year (750 loans representing $4.3 million.) There were also about $7.0 million (1,052 grants) obligated in the Section 504 grant program compared to $7.9 million (1,245 grants) last year.

USDA’s Section 523 Self Help Housing Grant program funded 8 grants totaling $10.8 million compared to last year’s 6 grants totaling $3.7 million.

Multi-Family Housing Program Highlights

USDA’s Section 538 Multifamily Housing obligated 29 loan guarantees totaling $76.7 million compared to last year’s 35 loan guarantees ($68.4 million.) The Farm Labor Housing programs funded 4 loans and 1 grant totaling $5,120,000 and $4,000,000 respectively. There were no Farm Labor Housing loans or grants at this time last year. There have been no other loan or grant obligations so far this year

USDA obligated funds for 40,063 rental assistance units under the Section 521 Rental Assistance program totaling $238.7 million. This compares to about 38,592 units ($219.6 million) obligated same time last year. There were also 2,898 Rural Housing Vouchers totaling $14.1 million compared to 1,939 vouchers representing $9.6 million this time last year.

Download the combined document.

* The Rural Housing Service (RHS) monthly obligation reports are produced by the Housing Assistance Council (HAC) 1025 Vermont Ave., NW, Suite 606, Washington, DC 20005. The monthly figures derive from HAC tabulations of USDA –RHS 205c, d, and f report data. For questions or comments about the obligation reports, please contact Michael Feinberg at 202-842-8600 or michael@ruralhome.org.

An Update on Maturing Mortgages in USDA’s Section 515 Rural Rental Housing Program

Rural America is Losing Affordable Rental Housing at an Alarming Rate

USDA’s Section 515 Rural Rental Housing properties are an important resource for many rural households and communities. But the availability of these homes is declining. In 2016, USDA presented estimates of the date when properties would leave their portfolio and potentially lose affordability and some renter protections. HAC examined changes in USDA’s Section 515 portfolio during the past five-year period. The analysis identified 921 Section 515 properties that left the portfolio between 2016 and July 2021 – nearly three times the original USDA projection for maturing mortgages during the five-year period. The ramifications of this accelerated loss of affordable rural rental housing are important as the number of properties expected to leave USDA’s portfolio will grow exponentially in the coming decades.

Download Research Brief (PDF)

Appendix 1: List of properties that have left the program.

 

USDA Rural Development Obligations Cover

USDA Rural Development Obligations FY 22- January

USDA Rural Development Obligations Report Cover - FY 2021

As of the end of January, USDA obligated 33,374 loans, loan guarantees, and grants totaling about $5.9 billion. This is $2.2 billion more than obligation levels from this time last year. At that time, there were 47,476 loans, loan guarantees, and grants obligated totaling $8.1 billion.

The agency has been operating under a series of continuing resolutions since the beginning of the fiscal year.

Single Family Housing Program Highlights

The Section 502 Guaranteed loan program, the largest of the Single Family Housing programs, obligated $5.6 billion (30,597 loan guarantees) up from $7.8 billion (44,318 loan guarantees) last year.

For the Section 502 Direct program, loan obligations totaled $264.5 million (1,374 loans), a bit less than last year’s obligation level of $292.3 million (1,623 loans.) About 29 percent of the loan dollars went to Very Low-income (VLI) applicants. VLI loans represented nearly 34 percent of the total number of Section 502 Direct loans.

The Section 504 Repair and Rehabilitation programs obligated 516 loans representing $3.4 million. This compares to 587 loans representing $3.4 million this time last year. There were also about $5.5 million (848 grants) obligated in the Section 504 grant program compared to $5.7 million (916 grants) last year.

USDA’s Section 523 Self Help Housing Grant program funded 7 grants totaling $3.9 million up from last year’s 5 grants totaling nearly $3.5 million.

Multi-Family Housing Program Highlights

USDA’s Section 538 Multifamily Housing obligated 19 loan guarantees totaling about $47.0 million, higher than last year’s 20 loan guarantees ($64.7 million.) The Farm Labor Housing programs funded 3 loans and 1 grant totaling $4.8 million and $4.0 million respectively. There have been no other loan or grant obligations so far this year.

USDA obligated funds for 40,064 rental assistance units under the Section 521 Rental Assistance program totaling $238.2 million compared to 38,592 units ($219.5 million) obligated same time last year. There were also 2,064 Rural Housing Vouchers totaling $9,.9 million compared to 1,675 vouchers representing nearly $8.4 million this time last year.

Download the combined document.

* The Rural Housing Service (RHS) monthly obligation reports are produced by the Housing Assistance Council (HAC) 1025 Vermont Ave., NW, Suite 606, Washington, DC 20005. The monthly figures derive from HAC tabulations of USDA –RHS 205c, d, and f report data. For questions or comments about the obligation reports, please contact Michael Feinberg at 202-842-8600 or michael@ruralhome.org.

USDA Rural Development Obligations Cover

USDA Rural Development Obligations FY 22 – December

USDA Rural Development Obligations Report Cover - FY 2021

As of the end of December, USDA obligated 26,861 loans, loan guarantees, and grants totaling nearly $4.8 billion, over $830 million above this time last year.

The agency is currently operating under a second continuing resolution which provides funding through February 18, 2022.

Single Family Housing Program Highlights

The Section 502 Guaranteed loan program, the largest of the Single Family Housing programs, obligated over $4.5 billion (24,760 loan guarantees) up from nearly $3.8 billion (21,758 loan guarantees) last year.

For the Section 502 Direct program, loan obligations totaled nearly $206 million (1,050 loans), compared to last year’s obligation level of $142.4 million (756 loans.) About 30 percent of the loan dollars went to Very Low-income (VLI) applicants. VLI loans represented nearly 35 percent of the total number of Section 502 Direct loans.

The Section 504 Repair and Rehabilitation programs obligated 384 loans and 640 grants representing about $2.6 million and 4.2 million. Loan volume was up from this time last year (317 loans representing almost $1.8 million.) For Section 504 grants, almost $3 million (478 grants) were obligated this time last year.

USDA’s Section 523 Self Help Housing Grant program funded 5 grants and contracts totaling $3.6 million similar to last year’s 5 grants and contracts totaling $3.5 million.

Multi-Family Housing Program Highlights

USDA’s Section 538 Multifamily Housing obligated 13 loan guarantees totaling $39 million, higher than last year’s 7 loan guarantees representing $21.4 million.

The Farm Labor Housing programs funded 1 loans and 1 grants totaling $1,000,000 and $4,000,000 respectively. There were no loans or grants at this time last year.

USDA obligated funds for 37,904 units under the Section 521 Rental Assistance program totaling $225 million compared to 30 units ($150,564) obligated same time last year. There were also 1,102 Rural Housing Vouchers totaling $5.4 million compared to 945 vouchers representing $4.8 million this time last year.

Download the combined document.

* The Rural Housing Service (RHS) monthly obligation reports are produced by the Housing Assistance Council (HAC) 1025 Vermont Ave., NW, Suite 606, Washington, DC 20005. The monthly figures derive from HAC tabulations of USDA –RHS 205c, d, and f report data. For questions or comments about the obligation reports, please contact Michael Feinberg at 202-842-8600 or michael@ruralhome.org.