David Smith


Part 2: The Affordable Housing Guru Reveals the Future

Ep. 52 - Walk through an enclosed vestibule into a commercial building and mitigate safety COVID infection worries! Retrofit your house for safety! Change multifamily standards to ensure safety! Install an app that will let you know when someone with COVID is within your range. David Smith, the affordable housing guru, reveals what the future can look like. He has come up with a healthy secure housing concept that supports healthy living after the COVID-19 reopening. He has created concepts that explain the essentiality of housing and establishing health-secure environments, especially in multifamily dwellings. A fascinating interview revealing the "why not's" available to us!

Top Takeaways:

    • How the pandemic has changed our view of every residential environment
    • Understanding the 4+1 elements to consider to make your homes safe and secure for you
    • How excluded people will lose out on the benefits of the internet and why we need to eliminate those exclusions.
    • The need to eliminate infrastructure inequities and inequities
    • How the current pandemic will lead to modern health infrastructure and make people's lives safer

Listen in to learn how the COVID-19 has changed people's views on residential environments and is going to change the health infrastructure.

"We live in the healthiest and most connected time in human history." -David Smith


David Smith has 44+ years of continuous professional focus on affordable housing in all its forms, AHI's founder and CEO David A. Smith have a global track record of conceptualizing, designing, negotiating, sourcing, and closing innovative transactions that create new products, programs, and entities, and a reputation for insight, creativity, adaptive innovation, passion, client commitment, and problem‐solving.


David has led AHI consulting work across 40+ countries, for clients such as the World Bank, USAID, South African Banking Association, Gates Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, Urban Institute, and many others. He knows the housing ecosystem of over forty countries, including comprehensive knowledge of the US ecosystem, David structures transactions, programs, policy models, and business strategies, and then can operationalize these into real practice.


Many times he has been recognized by his peers with awards such as NH&RA's Vision Award, the Appraisal Institute's Robert H. Armstrong prize, and NAHRO's Lange Award for international work and accomplishment. He has taught or co‐led executive‐education at, among others, Harvard Business School, Harvard Graduate School of Design, and the American University of Cairo.

Learn how making the internet available for all will change lives!


How the COVID-19 pandemic has changed our perception of healthy secure homes and we now have to live with intention [1:50]

Why all of our housing is insecure which is emotionally deeply unsettling and intolerable and needs a solution soon [4:38]

David explains why he invented the word 'healthy secure homes' to be intentional and aspirational plus the 4+1 elements of having a safe secure home [6:53]

He explains why he's using the terminology 'wet, dry, and scrub' which is the simplified way of referring to COVID-19 encounters [15:37]

Understanding the importance of the informational aspect in making you safe [18:25]

The negative effects of the lack of accessible internet opportunities for all children to study from home [20:32]

Why you need to be more aware of managing community interactions in safe spaces [25:20]

Why technology needs to be used for good and safety rather than be taken for granted [27:16]

David explains his anticipation on how mono used places will be forced to turn into multi used places by technology [31:24]

Why we need to rethink the two-dimensional model of zoning where residential, commercial, and educational zones are set up separately [35:47]

He explains the importance of eliminating inconsistent distribution of infrastructure which creates barriers to opportunities and equity [41:11]

The importance of bringing new ideas into the political world even though it is not always the case [47:49]


AHI Health Secure Housing

AHI Video Resources 

Tax Credit Advisor Article

Harvard U Graduate School of Design

Global Affordable Housing

National Affordable Housing Management Association Award

David Smith Community TrailBlazers Page Part 1


YouTube Videos

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