Housing Virginia E-News
September  2012
Viewpoint: Is the End of the Great Housing Recession in Sight?

by Bob Adams, Housing Virginia

Over the last five years, there is no doubt that the nation has been through the worst housing market collapse since the 1930's.  More than three and a half million families have been foreclosed on and another million and a half are in the foreclosure process.  As many as 10 million households are underwater on their mortgages. New home starts have come to a near standstill at some points over the past few years. American homeowners have lost more than $6 trillion in home equity. While Virginia has been better off than much of the nation, our housing market has suffered dramatic losses as well.  Every market in Virginia has seen double digit declines in home sales prices during the last five years. Housers have always known what the rest of the nation is still learning - that economic growth and prosperity are integrally connected to a healthy housing economy.

For housers, and for many Virginians, the question for the past two years has been: Is it over yet?  Have we reached the bottom?  Though not definitive, there are signs that the bottom has been reached in many markets across the state and upward movement in prices is starting. A recent survey of homebuilders nationally shows the level of confidence among builders at the highest level since 2006. The rate of single family home starts rose by 5.5% to 535,000 - starts have risen nearly 60% since its recession low in April of 2009 - but they are still just over half of the one million homes per year that is the benchmark of a healthy market.    

Examining the Forces Shaping the Future of Housing    


Housing Virginia has engaged four issue experts to identify the major trends that will  help to form  the future of affordable housing in Virginia.

Housing 2020: What is Shaping the Future of Housing in Virginia? will examine the key trends that are driving change within each of four key areas: Demographics, Economics, Finance and Sustainability. The focus will be to create strong messaging tools that can be used in a variety of settings to educate and alert policy makers to the trends and what they will mean for Virginia's communities of the future. HV will work with organizations and communities to sponsor forums that create community dialogue on these issues and their implications.

John Martin, President and CEO of the Southeastern Institute of Research (SIR Group), will address Demographics and Housing Preferences.  This analysis will look at population shifts, age, race, household composition and numerous other factors.  As CEO of the Boomer Project, John has also been the guiding force behind the Older Dominion Partnership, an umbrella organization for public, private and non-profit players dedicated to studying the impact of the age wave on Virginia and how to prepare for it. 


Allmond Elected Chair of VHDA Board 


Yvonne Toms Allmond of Norfolk was recently elected chair of the Virginia Housing Development Authority's Board of Commissioners. She is the first female to hold the position. She is a senior vice president of private banking for TowneBank and succeeds Charles C. McConnell of Coeburn. 


Allmond has spent her entire career in banking and currently serves as the vice chair of the Old Dominion University Community Development Corporation's board, a board member of the Norfolk State University Foundation Board, and a trustee of both the Norfolk Employees Retirement System Board and the Chrysler Museum of Art Board of Trustees.



First Release of PLAYBOOK Set for November



Virginia is just a few months away from its first web-based statewide inventory of local and regional affordable housing programs and policies. "PLAYBOOK... Find What Works" will allow easy access to a vast array of information on the affordable housing programs in place in each locality in the Commonwealth.

Data gathering has begun in the Northern Virginia area, where Virginia Tech and partners have compiled an affordable housing inventory workbook for all of the counties and independent cities in the Virginia portion of the Washington DC MSA. The month of August and the beginning of September were spent contacting planners in these jurisdictions to ask for feedback on our inventory and for the contact information for other people who would have knowledge of local affordable housing policies.  A working version of the PLAYBOOK will be available online for the Virginia portion  of the Washington DC MSA at the Governor's Housing Conference in November.



Roanoke Symposium Showcases the Economic Impact of Housing on the Roanoke Valley

The Roanoke Regional Housing Network teamed up with Housing Virginia on September 21st at the Vinton War Memorial to present a symposium on the Economic Impact of Housing on the Roanoke Valley economy. The symposium was attended by 50 of the region's public and private officials interested in exploring the economic impact that housing has on the region's economy.  

The symposium stimulated, informed and advanced the local dialogue about the importance of and connection between affordable housing and the local economy. The symposium addressed the connection between a broad range of housing types that are necessary to support a robust economy and how access to a full range of housing options is important to meet the demands of our future workforce. The event also  illustrated the benefits of mixed-income developments through community education and sound local government policies.

Read More... 


In This Issue
Examining the Forces Shaping the Future of Housing
Allmond Elected Chair of VHDA Board
First Release of PLAYBOOK Set for November
Roanoke Symposium Showcases the Economic Impact of Housing on the Roanoke Valley

SOURCEBOOK Update:  New Data + New Feature
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Housing Virginia
P. O. Box 4658
Richmond, VA   23220

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Webinar: Shifting Transitional Housing Programs to Rapid Re-Housing - September 27, 2012 10-12pm

2012 Virginia Rural Health Action Conference
October 8 & 9
Charlottesville, VA

Rally for Homeownership
Oct 11, 12:00-1:00p.m., Richmond
Click here to register!

Hampton Roads Housing Consortium Sixth Annual Housing Awards Ceremony October 11 at 9:00 a.m.info@hamptonroadshousing.org

Governor's Housing Conference
November 14-16, Roanoke

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