LEARNING AREA: Racial Equity, Real Estate Development
Misdirected Housing Supports

Misdirected Housing Supports: Why the Mortgage Interest Deduction Unjustly Subsidizes High-Income Households and Expands Racial Disparities


Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy and Management and the National Low Income Housing Coalition




The report examines who is likeliest to benefit from the $25 billion annual tax expenditure on the mortgage interest deduction embedded in the tax code and finds that most benefits flow to higher-income, disproportionately white homeowners. The report also outlines how the resources dedicated to the mortgage interest deduction could instead be used to support low-income renters and homeowners, through expanding rental assistance, investing in affordable rental housing production, supporting small-dollar mortgage lending, and creating stabilization programs to keep low-income families stably housed.