Representative Ellison Introduces Legislation to End Homelessness and Housing Poverty through Tax Reform

Representative Keith Ellison (D-MN) reintroduced on February 8 the “Common Sense Housing Investment Act of 2017,” (H.R. 948) to end homelessness and housing poverty through tax reform. The bill calls for modest reforms to the mortgage interest deduction (MID), a $70 billion tax write-off that largely benefits America’s highest-income households, and reinvests the significant savings into providing affordable housing for people with the greatest needs by expanding the national Housing Trust Fund, the Low Income Housing Tax Credit, public housing, and rental assistance solutions—without adding any costs to the federal government.

The reforms are simple and bipartisan. First, the bill reduces the amount of a mortgage eligible for the tax break from $1 million to $500,000—impacting fewer than 6% of homeowners with a mortgage. Second, the bill converts the MID into a tax credit, allowing 15 million more low and moderate income homeowners who currently do not benefit from the MID to get a much-needed tax break.

H.R. 948 builds on the success of Mr. Ellison’s recent Dear Colleague letter, signed by 34 members of Congress, urging the Ways and Means Committee to reinvest any savings from housing-related tax reforms into affordable housing solutions.

NLIHC and the United for Homes campaign—including more than 2,300 national, state, and local organizations and elected officials in all 435 congressional districts—strongly endorse H.R 948. We urge all housing advocates to ask their Representatives to cosponsor H.R. 948 to help end homelessness and housing poverty in comprehensive tax reform.

The text of H.R. 948 is at:

A copy of Mr. Ellison’s Dear Colleague letter can be found at:

More information on the MID is at:

Join the United for Homes campaign at: