HUD remodels, simplifies home page

The most requested information on the Department of Housing and Urban Development's World Wide Web site is simple: how to buy a home. It has not been simple, however, to get to that information through the many layers of the agency's Web site. But that changed last week when HUD unveiled a new look

The most requested information on the Department of Housing and Urban Development's World Wide Web site is simple: how to buy a home.

It has not been simple, however, to get to that information through the many layers of the agency's Web site. But that changed last week when HUD unveiled a new look for its Web site (www.hud.gov). One click on the home page's Own a Home link takes users to the new online Buyer's Kit page.

"By far the single piece of information people want the most is homes for sale," said Candis Harrison, Web manager for HUD. "So we have made that information more accessible."

The Buyer's Kit spells out the home-buying process and provides a link to HUD homes for sale, with maps, directions and information on schools.

Most people looking for information on the HUD site are not government- or technology-savvy, Harrison said. They want to know the names and numbers of federal regulations, or they want to know how HUD can help them get a loan or deal with an incompetent landlord.

Sorting through the many layers of the old HUD Web site could be frustrating to the point of rendering the site almost useless, Harrison said. The new structure is intended to make this basic information as accessible as possible.

"We haven't changed a whole lot of the organization of the information. What we've done is try to pull up some of the most important information and flatten [the Web site] out," Harrison said.

The 14 main topics on the HUD home page include links to information on filing a complaint, rental help and projects occurring in communities across the country. These sections are now one click from the front page, making it much easier to get around the site.

For further ease of navigation, the top of each inside page provides links to Home, Q&A, Shortcuts, Search/Index and

E-mail. The Q&A includes answers to the most common questions asked of HUD offices. The 14 main topics also are listed along the left side of the inside pages, making it easy to move from section to section within the site.

The links to local offices' pages also are easier to access. These pages are maintained by the area office, but they are designed according to a template from Harrison's office, maintaining the appearance of continuity.

HUD's Web site is run using a variety of systems, managed mainly by contractors from Advanced Technology Systems Inc. The pages are developed on desktops running Microsoft Corp.'s Windows 98 and Windows NT 4.0 and then are sent by File Transfer Protocol to Unix servers running Sun Microsystems Inc.'s Solaris 2.6 and a Netscape Communications Corp. Enterprise Web server, according to ATS task leader Dale Tuttle.

However, the amount of information on the HUD Web site is making this system difficult to maintain. "HUD's [site] is so huge now that it is very labor-intensive," Harrison said.

The HUD Web team spoke with other agencies and private-sector organizations to determine a better way to manage the site than manual development.

They are now considering moving to a dynamic database system, "but we need to investigate how it will impact the site," Tuttle said.

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.