This year’s annual Ohio Housing Conference hosted by the Ohio Housing Finance Agency and the Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing was a SUCCESS. It was everything and more than expected. This conference was inundated with lenders, non-profit agencies, developers, banks, legal representatives, companies providing services for homeowners (i.e. pest control, furniture, weatherization, etc.) HUD, USDA and more. This gave HDS the opportunity to network and engage with so many peers in the affordable housing industry.
Tuesday’s Opening Economic Plenary was an informative session that focused on an array of topics. The highlight was on a robust Consumer Confidence, active trade wars in Business Confidence, and a growing GDP. There was also dialog regarding the probability of a recession in the next 12 months.
One of the many sessions, titled: “Next Generation Myth Busters,” outlined the differences in the generations and focused mostly on millennials and Gen Z. Millennials are still wanting the American Dream of homeownership (nearly 90%), but only 4.9% thought they would be able to buy in the next year due to things like increased consumer debt (student loans). Something to keep in mind is that most millennials and Gen Z don’t have time to work on their houses, so they are seeking for homes that are maintenance free, have diversity in the neighborhood as well as mixed income levels.
Another interesting session HDS attended was one that talked about Lower Median Income Homebuyers and/or Rehab programs. We were able to gain more information about the demographic of borrowers using the OHFA programs, Grants for Grads, Heroes Program, and the OHFA Advantage program. A fact that stood out in this session was that there are many people who are taking advantage of the 50% AMI and 80% AMI subsidies that are available today.
After attending the sessions, our Business Development Manager, Sheryl Krocek, went out and enjoyed not only dinner, but also a Columbus Blue Jackets game with OHFA’s Jim Durham, U.S. Bank’s Lou Caresani, Freddie Mac’s Melanie Schirz, and Stifel’s Erin Jackson.
All in all, this was a fun, action packed and informative conference where the participants walked away feeling as though we had learned a lot! We look forward to attending another annual Ohio Housing Conference!