Biden administration unveils renter protections

Washington, DC CNN —In response to rent payments soaring across the country in recent years, the Biden administration unveiled new actions Wednesday to protect tenants, make renting more affordable and improve fairness in the rental housing market.
The agencies involved include the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of Justice.
More than a third of the American population — 44 million households — rent their homes.
Renter-centered actionsThe actions outlined on Wednesday target the practices of landlords, rental housing financing and ways to support renters who may be unfairly excluded from renting.
It’s the first time the FTC has issued a request for information exploring unfair practices in the rental market.
The FHFA will initiate a process to examine limits on egregious rent increases and proposals for renter protections for future investments.
The administration also set out its guiding principles in its “Blueprint for a Renters Bill of Rights,” which, while not enforceable, aims to underscore protections the administration says every renter deserves.
These include access to safe,quality, affordable housing; clear and fair leases, and access to eviction prevention and rent relief resources to remain sustainably housed.
The Biden administration has made several announcements addressing housing challenges.
Last May, the administration released an housing supply action plan, setting the goal of closing America’s housing supply shortfall in five years.
Neither advocates nor industry satisfiedHousing advocates celebrated the administration’s announcement, despite it falling short of more robust tenant protections they’d like to see.
Meanwhile, others in the housing industry say that this kind of federal involvement in housing policy serves to increase housing costs.