In this Housing Wired piece, Mortgage Bankers Association president David H. Stevens lays out a strong case regarding the current state of America's housing, calling it a "crisis."

Pointing out that the cost of rent is soaring and the home ownership rate has fallen, he challenges the next president of the United States to take a strong stand on issues that could help or hinder the housing industry. His ideas include creating new opportunities to help young Americans buy a house for the first time and broadening options for families that need help paying rent.

To realize this vision, housing must rank at the top of our next president’s domestic agenda. The president will also need a leader working within the White House or at HUD who is fully empowered to engage the vast number of housing stakeholders and armed with sufficient resources to get the job done.

When it comes to meeting the housing needs of its people, America has always responded forcefully. During the Great Depression, Congress created the Federal Housing Administration to help stabilize the mortgage market and keep people in their homes. More recently, initiatives like the Dodd-Frank law, the Troubled Asset Relief Program, and the Hardest Hit Fund helped lead our nation through the Great Recession.

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