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Every week, Virginia Organizing posts concrete steps so you can take timely and important action! Tips to making your action effective: be polite but firm (don’t yell or curse or get angry); give your name and where you are from; tell whoever answers the phone what your concern is and why; ask for the official position on your issue; and remember, the person answering the phone is not elected and is just doing his or her job..

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The government is in business with many landlords, offering them favorable loan terms to finance their businesses. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, also known as the “Government Sponsored Enterprises,” work with banks to offer $150 billion to landlords in financing every year, without any strings attached.

As a result of tenant organizing, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), which regulates Fannie and Freddie, is now deciding whether to condition government-backed loans on a set of tenant protections. These protections could include regulations on rent hikes and evictions, housing safety requirements, bans on discrimination, and more. If enacted, they could benefit over 12.4 million rental homes across the country.

The FHFA is now seeking comments from tenants and advocates to inform this decision. 


WHAT SHOULD I INCLUDE? If you are a tenant, you should share your experiences trying to find safe and affordable housing AND what you want to see the federal government do about it.  Your comment will be publicly available. Do not share anything you want to keep private or confidential.


NOTE: It is important to make this comment unique by adding in your experience and changing words to make it sound more like you! The government does not count comments that are too similar. 
My name is [FIRST NAME] and I am a tenant living in [CITY/STATE].  I am a member of the Homes Guarantee Campaign.
[[SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCE— Has your rent been hiked? If so, how much? How did this impact you? Did you have to start working additional hours or jobs? What are the main challenges to finding and keeping affordable housing for you? Has your landlord filed an eviction? If so, how did they notify you? How did the eviction impact you?]
The rent is too damn high. The Federal Housing Finance Agency should protect tenants by limiting annual rent hikes to 1.5 times the Consumer Price Index or 3%, whichever is lower, in properties with federally backed mortgages. These limits should be applied universally as a requirement to all federally backed mortgage programs. 
In addition to limits on rent hikes, the FHFA should prohibit evictions without good cause, ban source of income discrimination, enforce and expand existing protections against discrimination, require safe and accessible housing conditions, create a landlord registry, require fair and standardized leases, ensure tenants have the right to organize, and create an Office of Tenant Protections to enforce these rights in all properties with federally backed mortgages. 


  • Landlords are raising rents at the highest rates in over 40 years.
  • Median rents in the U.S. have risen nearly 20% in the last two years alone.
  • Nationally, median rent has surpassed $2,000 for the first time ever.
  • In 2023, there is not a single state where a worker employed full-time at the federal minimum wage can afford a modest two-bedroom apartment.

Submit your comment here!

If you need more information or want to learn more about how to get active in your community, please contact us at info@virginia-organizing.org or 434-984-4655 ext. 227. You can also sign up for email updates and action alerts at http://www.virginia-organizing.org/email-signup.

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