Are we overregulated?
2/10/2017 1:32:30 PM

By Glenn Stevens, NCHM President

There has been a lot of discussion lately about reducing overly complicated and even unnecessary regulations within the federal government. It goes without saying that our industry is pretty darn regulated. I suppose the question of the hour is, are we too regulated? And if so, what regulations could we do without?

The HUD Handbook 4350.3 is 794 pages – a pretty daunting ream of paper for a seasoned veteran, and a veritable nightmare for a newcomer. (By the way, you can find the Paperwork Reduction Act Certification on page 30.) If your property has tax credits, add at least another 200 pages of rules to the pile on your or your manager's desk. That's over a thousand pages of rules and regulations that must currently be followed to successfully comply with just your occupancy function. Add the myriad of other requirements and you're probably talking about at least another thousand pages.

I must admit that there is some irony in me writing this article as one of my organization's primary purposes is to train industry professionals in how to comply with these regulations. But I think it is important for us to abide by the Executive Order that established the center, which mandates that we work towards the "development of improved management practices."

So I pose the question: how can we reduce regulations and still maintain or even improve the system that currently exists? Which regulations are redundant, which are overburdening, and what just plain doesn't make sense to you as a housing professional?

Let's get a discussion going on this topic. And if you disagree with the notion of less regulatory oversight, I'd like to hear from you as well.

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