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Housing

Affordable Housing Developers Look to the White House for Help

Construction costs and labor shortages have made it harder to build affordable housing. Now the Biden administration is urging cities to use American Rescue Plan funds to boost supply.

An apartment building under construction in Inglewood, California, in February.

An apartment building under construction in Inglewood, California, in February.

Photographer: George Rose/Getty Images North America

Building new affordable housing has always taken a dizzying combination of funding sources to make the budget pencil out. Now the math has gotten even more complicated, as supply-chain disruptions, inflation and a shortage of construction workers drive costs up and extend development timelines.

“Everything is taking longer,” says Aaron Pechota, executive vice president of development and head of affordable housing at the NRP Group, one of the largest affordable housing developers in the US. “Everything is getting more complex as you add more funding. And that all translates into higher costs, which ultimately translates into less units being produced.”