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State to Gain $873.5 Million in Affordable Apartments; Development expected to support 12,500 jobs statewide

hands holding a wooden house

RALEIGH— Federal tax credits and other financing awarded in 2018 will build $873.5 million of affordable apartments in 32 North Carolina counties. The work is expected to support 12,500 jobs and generate $36.9 million in state and local tax revenue.

Tax credits and tax-exempt bonds were approved for 48 projects by the North Carolina Federal Tax Reform Allocation Committee last week, based on recommendations from the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency, from 128 applications that were received. These join 10 properties that were awarded tax-exempt bonds earlier this year, for a total of 58 developments. 

“These high-quality apartments will provide excellent homes for working families and seniors,” said Scott Farmer, executive director of the NC Housing Finance Agency. “Housing tax credits have been proven economic drivers for communities, particularly in rural areas, and these developments will support thousands of jobs.” 

The funding will produce 5,516 privately owned, privately managed affordable apartments. A total of 4,250 apartments will be designated for families, and 1,266 will provide homes for seniors. At least 550 of the apartments will be targeted for persons with disabilities. [A list of housing developments by county is can be found here.] The new awards will bring the number of Housing Credit apartments in the state to more than 83,500.

In addition to the federal tax credits, 32 of the properties will receive $21.8 million in loans from the Workforce Housing Loan Program, created by the General Assembly in 2014 to encourage development in low-income counties and reduce rents in moderate and high-income counties. These properties will be located in 26 counties.

Agency loans totaling $13 million were also awarded to 17 of the projects by the NC Housing Finance Agency’s board of directors. Together, the additional resources make it economically feasible to build new apartments in lower-wealth counties and to reduce rents in urban counties.

All of the apartments are affordable for households earning 60 percent of a county’s median income, and many are affordable at 50 percent or 40 percent of median as the result of the additional financing. The state’s Key Program provides operating assistance to make apartments affordable for persons with disabilities living on Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which is currently $750 a month for individuals or $1,125 per month for an eligible individual with an eligible spouse. 

The NC Housing Finance Agency evaluates the tax credit applications on behalf of the NC Federal Tax Reform Allocation Committee. The highly competitive application process uses a quantitative ranking system and includes independent market studies of each property and site visits by agency staff. Each property is rated for architectural design, rent affordability, financial stability, capability of the development team and criteria to ensure statewide distribution of the financing.

The North Carolina Housing Finance Agency, a self-supporting public agency, has financed more than 255,000 affordable homes and apartments statewide since its creation in 1973.