State to Gain $181 Million of Affordable Apartments; 792 Units in Flood Counties

Press Contact Only:

Margaret Matrone, NCHFA, 919-877-5606, 

RALEIGH--North Carolina will gain $181 million of affordable rental housing as the result of funding awarded to 53 apartment developments approved Friday (Aug. 16) by the Tax Reform Allocation Committee and North Carolina Housing Finance Agency.

The developments will provide 2,129 apartments, 792 of which will be built in counties affected by Hurricane Floyd. Statewide, 933 apartments will be designated for the elderly, 86 for persons with mental illness or other special needs, and the rest for working families. Some 370 apartments throughout the 53 developments are fully accessible for persons with mobility impairments.

The developments will receive $13.7 million of federal Housing Credits, as approved by the committee, which consists of Secretary of Commerce James Fain, State Treasurer Richard Moore, and State Budget Officer David McCoy. Twenty-three developments also have applied or been approved by the N.C. Housing Finance Agency’s board of directors for low-interest loans from the state’s Housing Trust Fund and federal HOME Program. Thirty-nine developments will use state income tax credits, as authorized by the General Assembly in 1999.

The 53 developments were selected from an original field of 157 proposals, of which 110 completed the two-stage application process.

The N.C. Housing Finance Agency evaluates the properties on behalf of the committee, beginning with independent site and market studies of each property, site visits by agency staff, and invitations for comments by local governments. Each property is also rated for rent affordability, financial structure, capability of the development team, special targeting by location or population, and architectural design.

The federal Housing Credit Program finances virtually all of the affordable rental developments now being built nationwide. The Housing Credits have been an important source of flood rebuilding, financing 1,742 new apartments in eastern N.C. flood counties since Hurricane Floyd. The program has financed 34,300 privately owned, affordable apartments in North Carolina since it began in 1987.

Owners of Housing Credit properties agree to keep rents affordable for tenants earning 60 percent of the local median income, usually for 30 years. Properties receiving loans must be affordable at 50 percent of median. For a family of four, 50 percent of median income ranges from $21,850 in non-metropolitan counties to $35,650 in the Triangle.

To make the properties economically viable at these rent levels, the owners are allowed to take a credit on their federal income tax of 9 percent of the eligible costs, for a period of 10 years. Properties that receive federal credits are also eligible for a credit against state income tax of 25 percent or 75 percent of the federal credit amount. The larger state credit applies to developments in economically distressed or flood-impacted counties.

The N.C. Housing Finance Agency is a self-supporting public agency created by the General Assembly in 1973. The Agency receives no state tax funds for its operating expenses. It has financed more than 126,000 affordable homes and apartments statewide.

For more information about the hearing, contact Kelly Irving at 919-877-5712.

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