Thursday, September 10, 2009

ATTENTION: Housing Asset Renewal Program (HARP)

New York City's Housing Asset Renewal Program (HARP), a program that was recently supported by the New York City Council, regards the financing of affordable housing throughout New York City.

The HARP program is a $20M pilot program that works to turn unfinished houses into affordable housing for working and middle class New Yorkers. HARP will be part of the administration's "New Housing Marketplace Plan to build and preserve 165,000 units of affordable housing, and part of the City’s Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan to create jobs for New Yorkers, implement a vision for long-term economic growth and build affordable, attractive neighborhoods." The program works with developers and building-owners who have such housing on-hand, in an effort to develop affordable-housing proposals.

HARP has set a three-part criteria for which projects that will get priority:

Buildings that-
a). Will stabilize a community
b). Need the lowest amount of financial assistance
c). Offer largest discount– below market rates

The City will not own the units, but rather provide financing and work with the owners to get the lowest prices.

For rental proposals, projects are required to make at least 50% of their units affordable for at least 30 years. Preference is given to developers who can offer a larger discount. Additional "preference will be given to proposals that require a HARP subsidy of less than $75,000 per affordable dwelling unit." In addition, the proposal must reflect rents that are affordable to households with incomes at (or below) 130% of HUD's income limit ($99,800 for a family of four, or $69,900 for an individual).

If the proposal is to develop the housing for home ownership, the maximum income limit for per unit must be less than (or equal to) 165% of HUD's income limit (which is $126,700 for a family of four, or $88,700 for an individual).

All affordable housing developments will go through HDP’s lottery process and will be on website once complete.

You can additionally find more information on the HARP Program here and here.

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