Housing News Roundup: June 4, 2015
$200 Million Acquisition-Rehab Loan Pool in Low-Income Chicago Neighborhoods
Nonprofit lender Community Investment Corp (CIC) has raised $200 million from three dozen banks to finance the acquisition and rehabilitation of apartments in low-to-moderate-income areas in Chicago. CIC plans to use the money to help close the gap left by lenders when they pulled out of the market during the economic recession of 2008. CIC understands that the housing market is recovering in Chicago, but the recovery has been slow to arrive in many low-to-moderate economic zones in and around the city. CIC will loan the $200 million over about five years in its effort to preserve 7,500 affordable rental apartments and house 18,000 people.
Source: Chicago Real Estate Daily
CA Seeking Medicaid Waiver for Housing-Related Services
California is joining the list of states trying to access federal Medicaid dollars to house medically fragile populations. Health officials in Los Angeles County have already used county healthcare funds to relocate around 100 chronically ill homeless people in apartments where they can receive medical care at an on-site clinic. “If we don’t, they tend to die young on the streets,” said Marc Trotz, director of the county’s Housing for Health program. “And they just continually recycle through expensive health care settings.” California wants to use federal Medicaid money to take this approach statewide. The funds would not pay for rent, but rather case management to connect residents with the other services they need. Earlier, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services declined New York State’s request to use Medicaid to house the chronically ill.
Source: Healthcare Finance
Continued Wait on 421-a Creates Development Uncertainty
While the governor and mayor hash out the future of the 421-a tax break in New York City, the real estate industry faces uncertainty that may delay or derail multifamily development. Considering the contentious debates about the need for the tax break and how the modify the program to increase housing affordability, lawmakers may extend the program for several months while they work toward a resolution. That may be counterproductive, according to David Lombino, director of special projects for the Two Trees real-estate company. “A straight extender would be a worse outcome, because then you’re going to have this whole fight again sometime in a year or two,” remarked Lombino.
Source: Wall Street Journal
Opinion: Health Challenges from CA Housing Insecurity
An op-ed by pediatrician Megan Sandel highlights the challenges faced by Californians whose housing in unstable because they cannot afford their rent and argues for a legislation package to address the issue. Usually in these low-to-moderate income families, children are placed at risk, forced to wonder where they will sleep at night, uprooted from schools and community. Sandel describes seeing patients whose biggest health problem is housing insecurity. Frequent moves are connected with increased hospitalization. As a consequence of housing-related health problems and instability, bright kids often fall behind.
Source: Sacramento Bee