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Housing Call: July 11, 2023

Federal Updates:

  1. Since last fall, the NC Housing Coalition has been a part of NLIHC’s national HoUSed cohort. The national HoUSed campaign is dedicated to advancing anti-racist policies and achieving the large-scale sustained investments and reforms necessary to ensure that renters with the lowest incomes have an affordable place to call home. The campaign has four central tenets:
  • Bridge the gap between incomes and housing costs by expanding rental assistance to every eligible household.
  • Expand and preserve the supply of rental homes affordable and accessible to people with the lowest incomes.
  • Provide emergency rental assistance to households in crisis by creating a national housing stabilization fund.
  • Strengthen and enforce renter protections. The power imbalance between renters and landlords put renters at risk of housing instability and homelessness.

This month, an opportunity for input related to the fourth key pillar of the campaign – strengthening and enforcing renter protections – is opening at the national level with the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

  1. The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) released a Request for Input or RFI on needed renter-protections in FHFA-financed properties. The RFI is open until July 31, 2023. In response to this NLIHC is hosting two renter protection working groups, one on July 19 at 4pm, and another on July 26 at 4pm via zoom to discuss and provide input on their letter responding to the FHFA RFI.

Some of the top priorities for federal renter protections include:

  • Source-of-income protections to prohibit landlords from discriminating against households receiving housing assistance and to give families greater choice about where to live.
  • “Just cause” eviction standards and the right to renew leases to help protect renters from housing instability.
  • Anti-rent gouging protections to stop landlords from dramatically raising rents.
  • Requirements to ensure housing is safe, decent, accessible, and healthy for renters and their families.

There are several ways to engage on this:

  1. On July 1, HUD began using the new NSPIRE housing inspections standards for HUD-assisted and insured housing. This model is designed to prioritize the health and safety of residents by taking into account the location and the severity of the issue. These standards will replace standards that have been in place since 1998.
  2. Sens. Thom Tillis and Ted Budd are expected to sign onto the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act bill later this week. This is fantastic news! If you have any connections with Congressman Greg Murphy (on Ways & Means Committee in the House)’s office, please reach out and ask him to sign on to the AHCIA bill in the House.
  3. Ohio and Texas recently passed legislation to enact state LIHTC programs, which brings the number of states that have enacted legislation for a state LIHTC program to 28, plus Washington D.C.. NC’s state LIHTC program expired in 2015 and there have been multiple attempts since then, including in the current session, to bring it back. Legislation introduced this session did not survive crossover in May.


State Updates: 

  • NCORR has also launched the third phase of the Affordable Housing Development Fund, which invites local governments to apply for financing for multifamily or single-family housing rehabilitation and construction outside of the 100-year floodplain. The application period will close on Friday, August 25, 2023, and awards will be announced in October 2023. For more information, visit the link in the call notes.

State Legislative Updates

  • We are now operating past the fiscal year deadline, this means that we are operating on recurring revenue. As of today, there is still no agreement. Both the House and Senate were out last week for the Fourth of July holiday. Word is that it will likely be at least another couple of weeks until we see a budget, if not August.
  • NC Gov. Cooper vetoes building code and charter school bills | On Friday, Gov. Cooper vetoed HB 488, a piece of legislation that prohibits any attempt to make the state residential building code more energy efficient and also loosens important design standards that protect homes from natural disasters. The bill now goes back to the House where it will be under consideration for a veto override tomorrow ( Wednesday). The House needs three-fifths of the vote to override the veto.


Local Updates:

  • No more Asheville tiny apartments? City puts micro-housing subsidies on pause | The City of Asheville is pausing Land Use Incentive Grant subsidies for micro-housing while they assess whether microunits meet needs for affordable housing, how allowable rents would be calculated, and whether the subsidy should be reduced to account for the smaller unit size. Micro-housing provides renters with their own bedroom and bathroom and features a shared kitchen and lounge areas on each floor. The Land Use Incentive Grant program was created in 2011 to encourage the inclusion of  affordable housing in market rate developments. If developers offer 20% of their units to people earning 80% of the Area Median Income for at least 20 years, they can qualify for tax subsidies.
  • Developers secure public funding to preserve affordable housing in Brookhill Village | Last week, Mecklenburg County voted to approve $3.5M for the preservation of 100 units of affordable housing at Brookhill Village on South Tryon Street. A ground lease will ensure affordability through 2049. Once renovations are complete, the city and county will manage the units and the Harvest Center will provide support services.
  • Dozens move into supportive housing as Meck. County works to aid aging homeless population | A motel conversion in Mecklenburg County recently completed Phase I of construction. Mecklenburg County purchased the former TownePlace motel that was converted into 27 supportive housing units for older adults experiencing chronic homelessness. Roof Above, a Charlotte-area service provider, will manage the units. Phase 2, which is expected to add an additional 50 units to the development, is expected to be completed next year.
  • Southeast Raleigh Promise Awarded $2M in Bond Proceeds to Build Affordable Rental HousingThe city of Raleigh recently voted to approve a 75-year ground lease for Southeast Raleigh Promise to develop 27 affordable homes near downtown. 9 homes will be for extremely low-income families earning less than 30% of the area median income. This project is supported by the City’s affordable housing bond proceeds.
  • Wilson Housing Authority opens $5.1M Eatmon Townhomes | The Wilson Housing Authority recently opened a 32-unit townhome development that has been in the works for over 6 years. Planning for the development began in 2016 after Hurricane Matthew flooding damaged housing authority properties and leaders decided to rebuild in an area less prone to flooding. A second phase of the project is slated to add 22 additional homes in the future.
  • Teacher Housing Complex coming to Bertie County | Bertie County leaders recently celebrated the groundbreaking of Dream Point Apartments in Windsor. The 24-unit development will be for Bertie County teachers and state employees and is expected to open in June 2024. Financing was made possible through a $3.5M zero interest loan from SECU Foundation, in addition to funds from Bertie County, the Town of Windsor, the school system, the state Department of Public Instruction, and private funds.



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Housing Call: June 27, 2023

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