On Sept. 30, more than 900 communities who currently are eligible for housing programs under the Rural Housing Service in the Department of Agriculture become ineligible. On Oct. 1, the definition of rural will revert to the original 1974 definition which is very restrictive and has not been updated to account for changing demographics.
The Senate has included a provision to grandfather all existing communities through the next census in their version of the Farm Bill. The House has yet to debate the Farm bill on the floor, and to date there is no provision in the House despite attempts by Rep. Fortenberry (R-IL).
NAR and a coalition of housing groups sent a letter to House and Senate leaders this week urging them to include a fix to this problem prior to the deadline. NAR will continue to work with legislators over the August recess to ensure this issue is addressed in September.