Affordable Housing News

HUD publishes guidance notice for VAWA 2013

Posted by NMA on May 22, 2017 12:49:09 PM

HUD has posted Notice PIH 2017-08, Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 Guidance. The 52-page notice is dated May 19. While the guidance does not contain any major changes from the VAWA 2013 final rule, it includes a number of useful examples and scenarios to assist PHAs in implementation of the rule. The notice is applicable to the public housing and HCV programs, including the project-based voucher (PBV) and moderate rehabilitation programs.

Here are a few examples of guidance from the notice:

  • A list of adverse screening factors which might be the direct result of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking
  • A detailed description of the certification and documentation process
  • A summary of policy requirements and a 5-page appendix detailing necessary PHA policies and procedures
  • Instructions for customizing the notice of occupancy rights
  • A ten-page section on requirements for emergency transfer plans
  • A clarification of the VAWA 2013 provision for establishing eligibility following bifurcation of a lease. This provision applies only to mixed families in which the victim has not contended eligible immigration status
  • A six-page model owner notification. Use of an owner notification letter is optional, as PHAs may instead rely on VAWA information included in the HAP contract.

In a related development, HUD has released translated versions of the four forms and model notices published in December 2016 for VAWA 2013 implementation. Each of the forms has been translated into 11 languages (Armenian, Cambodian, Creole, Japanese, Korean, Lao, Mandarin, Russian, Spanish, Thai, and Vietnamese).

The translated documents include (links to English versions):

  • HUD-5380, Notice of Occupancy Rights under the Violence Against Women Act
  • HUD-5381, Model Emergency Transfer Plan for Victims of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault, or Stalking
  • HUD-5382, Certification of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault, or Stalking, and Alternate Documentation (replaces form HUD-50066)
  • HUD-5383, Emergency Transfer Request for Certain Victims of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault, or Stalking

You’ll find links to all of the translated documents on this page at HUDCLIPS.

Topics: domestic violence, final rule, Mod Rehab, PBV, PIH notices, Program News and Notices, VAWA

HUD issues revised RAD notice

Posted by NMA on Jan 19, 2017 12:43:18 PM

RAD conversions

Last week via email, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced to the public the online publication of revised program instructions for the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) in Notice PIH 2012-32/Notice H 2017-03, REV-3. The revised notice, which fills 242 pages, includes the following key revisions for the first component (from the email):

  • Allowing PHAs to increase RAD rents by relinquishing existing balances of replacement housing factor (RHF) funds or demolition and disposition transition funding (DDTF)
  • Eliminating the cap on the number of project-based voucher units at a project
  • Revising the requirements regarding information provided to residents and PHA responses to resident comments at properties undergoing conversion
  • Extending the prohibition on re-screening to current public housing households that will reside in non-RAD PBV or non-RAD PBRA units in projects that contain RAD PBV or RAD PBRA units to facilitate the right to return to the assisted property
  • Consolidating the selection priority categories for new applications into “high investment applications” and “all other applications” (subject to public comment)
  • Allowing PHAs to submit a simple letter of interest rather than an application when a waiting list has formed, where the letter of interest would serve to reserve a project or portfolio’s position on the waiting list subject to future submission of a RAD application (subject to public comment)
  • Making an entire contiguous HOPE VI project that was developed in phases eligible, as long as the earliest phase is greater than ten years old (subject to public comment)
  • Correcting rent phase-ins for residents who may experience a rent increase as a result of conversion
  • Clarifying that a PHA is permitted to receive cash acquisition proceeds in excess of any seller take-back financing and that such proceeds must be used for affordable housing purposes, which is a newly defined term
  • Allowing flexibility for requirements related to capital needs assessments, i.e., permitting certain exemptions when the assisted units are a small percentage of the total project
  • Requiring title reports to be submitted with the Financing Plan
  • Modifying the maximum allowable developer fee by excluding from the formula for larger transactions any acquisition payments made to the PHA, developer fee, and reserves
  • Establishing greater flexibility to underwrite to new loan products
  • Providing greater detail on the acceptable forms in which a public or non-profit can demonstrate ownership or control
  • Providing guidance on owners’ responsibilities to treat lead-based paint hazards in the context of a RAD conversion
  • Encouraging PHAs and their partners to grant current workers whose employment positions may be eliminated during conversion the right of first refusal for new employment openings for which they are qualified

Changes for the second component include:

  • Likewise eliminating the cap on the number of PBV units at a project
  • Permitting Mod Rehab conversions to PBRA to convert at comparable market rents, up to 110 percent of fair market rent (FMR)
  • For Mod Rehab SRO conversions, authorizing the use of the efficiency FMR for SRO units, rather than 75 percent of the efficiency FMR, which is the existing SRO standard
  • Allowing all conversions to PBRA to achieve rents between 110 percent and 120 percent of FMR, if justified by comparable market rents and only in certain circumstances where preservation criteria have been met
  • For conversions to PBRA, permitting the use of small area FMRs (SAFMRs) in the calculation of the contract rent cap, with HUD approval

To help navigate through these numerous changes, HUD has kindly provided two versions of the notice: one showing all of the changes in a redlined format, and a clean version of the document. Both are available here, on the RAD webpage. According to the email, HUD intends to hold live webinars on the notice and will provide more information in the following weeks. Click here to join the RADBlast! email list.

Got questions about RAD? Nan McKay & Associates currently offers three RAD certifications: RAD Project-Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) OverviewRAD Project-Based Voucher (PBV) Specialist, and our newly redesigned Multifamily Housing Specialist (MHS), which is the only training in the affordable housing industry that includes specific requirements for PHAs participating in the RAD program. If your PHA has elected to transform its public housing to project-based rental assistance (PBRA), this training is a must.  If you aren't sure which training is the right one for your agency, give us a call at (800) 783-3100 or email sales@nanmckay.com and our experienced staff will point you in the right direction.

Topics: FMR, Mod Rehab, PBRA, PBV, PIH notices, Program News and Notices, public housing conversion, RAD, lead-based paint

PIH publishes notice on equal access rule

Posted by BEMuser on Aug 28, 2014 11:42:26 AM

Late yesterday, HUD’s Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) posted Notice PIH 2014-20, "Program Eligibility Regardless of Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity or Marital Status as Required by HUD’s Equal Access Rule." The notice is dated August 20 and is effective on that date.

The equal access final rule was published in the Federal Register on February 3, 2012. The rule provides that eligibility for HUD programs must be determined regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or marital status. It also prohibits inquiries as to sexual orientation or gender identity for purposes of determining eligibility or making housing available.

The new notice “provides guidance on how the equal access rule applies to PIH-assisted housing programs administered by public housing agencies (PHAs).” Subjects addressed in the notice include the following:

  • Applicability: The rule applies to all HUD-assisted housing, including public housing, the housing choice voucher (HCV) program, project-based vouchers (PBV), and the moderate rehabilitation program. It also applies to PHAs under the Moving to Work (MTW) program and the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD).
  • The notice also clarifies that the equal access rule applies to landlords participating in the HCV program. The landlord becomes subject to the rule when he or she executes a housing assistance payments (HAP) contract with the PHA. Housing providers are also subject to state and local fair housing laws.
  • Fair Housing Act: The federal Fair Housing Act does not include sexual orientation, gender identity, or marital status as protected classes. However, violations of the equal access rule could violate the Fair Housing Act’s prohibition on discrimination based on gender or disability.
  • Plan and Policy Revisions: PHAs must review and update their annual plans, HCV administrative plans, and public housing admissions and continued occupancy policies (ACOPs) to comply with the equal access rule. PHAs may have already made these revisions in response to the 2012 final rule.
  • Prohibited and Permissible Inquiries: The notice points out that the equal access rule does not prohibit all inquiries as to an applicant’s or participant’s sex, including inquiries necessary to determine the number of bedrooms for which a family may qualify. However, PHAs and owners are prohibited from inquiring about an applicant’s or participant’s sexual orientation or gender identity for the purpose of determining eligibility or otherwise making housing available.
  • Complaints to PHAs: Upon receipt of a complaint from an applicant or participant alleging a violation of the equal access rule, the PHA must determine if a program violation occurred and implement appropriate corrective action(s). The PHA must follow its written policies for responding to complaints. These policies must include a requirement that the PHA provide written notice of receipt of the complaint to those alleged to have violated the rule, and the complainant must be informed that such notice was made. After investigating the complaint, the PHA must provide the complainant and those alleged to have violated the rule with findings from the investigation, and a proposed corrective action or explanation as to why corrective action is not required. The PHA must keep records of all complaints, investigations, notices and corrective actions consistent with its current record-keeping obligations.

The notice also contains examples of program violations under the equal access rule, and examples of actions that may violate both the rule and the Fair Housing Act. Questions or requests for additional information should be directed to the local HUD field office or fair housing field office.

Do you have concerns about whether or not your agency is compliant with federal fair housing law? Nan McKay and Associates can help. Contact sales@nanmckay.com for more information.

Topics: fair housing, Mod Rehab, MTW, PBV, Program News and Notices, RAD

Friday news roundup 8/15/14

Posted by BEMuser on Aug 15, 2014 12:09:55 PM

In a Federal Register notice today, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published the proposed fair market rents (FMRs) for federal fiscal year (FFY) 2015 (October 1, 2014, through September 30, 2015). As the notice reminds us:

The primary uses of FMRs are to determine payment standards for the housing choice voucher (HCV) program, to determine initial renewal rents for some expiring project-based Section 8 contracts, to determine initial rents for housing assistance payment contracts in the Moderate Rehabilitation single room occupancy program, and to serve as rent ceilings in the HOME program.

In addition to listing the proposed FFY 2015 FMRs for all areas (see Schedule B), today’s notice:

  • Explains that the proposed FFY 2015 FMRs reflect the estimated 40th and 50th percentile rent levels trended to April 1, 2015
  • Announces that the proposed FFY 2015 FMRs do not reflect any updates to the methodology used to calculate FMRs
  • Lists the proposed FFY 2015 small area FMRs for the 5 demonstration participants (see Schedule B Addendum)
  • Lists the proposed FFY 2015 FMRs for manufactured home spaces in the HCV program (see Schedule D)

The accompanying FMR data set has been posted to HUD’s Policy Development and Research (PD&R) FMR page and includes the following items:

If you wish to submit comments on the proposed FMRs, you have until September 14 to do so. Final FMRs will become effective on October 1. For instructions on how and where to submit comments, see the “Addresses” section in today’s notice. For complete documentation of the development of the FMRs proposed for your area, visit this page at the HUD User Web site. In other news:

NLIHC: Senators urge Secretary Castro to issue final AFFH rule

Novogradac: NCSHA data reveals growth in LIHTC allocations and units produced

Rooflines: The dangerous rhetoric of escaping to opportunity

Topics: fair housing, FMR, LIHTC, Mod Rehab, Program News and Notices

Friday news roundup 7/25/14

Posted by BEMuser on Jul 25, 2014 10:02:13 AM

Affordable Housing Finance: New Jersey project becomes first Mod Rehab RAD deal

Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies: A view from the National Healthy Homes Conference

Next City: "Housing First" helps keep ex-inmates off the streets (and out of prison)

Next City: In San Diego, the number of homeless families more than tripled between 2010 and 2013

Next City: The "poor door": Segregation of people based on how much rent they can pay

NHC: Fair housing and the data paradox

Off the Charts: Fewer poor children under welfare law, but more very poor children

PBS (via Planetizen): Since 2001, the U.S. has lost nearly 13 percent of its low-income housing

Rooflines: The specific stumbling blocks getting in the way of vouchers fulfilling their promise of mobility

Rooflines: Subsidizing the upper middle class?

Topics: fair housing, Mod Rehab, Program News and Notices, RAD

Update on progress of Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD)

Posted by BEMuser on Jun 12, 2014 2:20:39 PM

HUD has updated the web page that provides information on the progress of the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD). Under the first component of RAD, HUD has so far awarded a commitment to enter into a housing assistance payments contract, or CHAP, to:

  • 361 public housing projects with 59,212 units
  • 8 Moderate Rehabilitation (Mod Rehab) projects with 1,053 units

The page provides a link to a full list of the recipients of the CHAP awards.

As you may recall, the current limit on conversions under the first component of RAD, for both the public housing and Mod Rehab programs, is 60,000 units. So the updated total of 60,265 units has exceeded the cap. Accordingly, HUD announces on the updated page that it has created a waiting list for the first component of RAD in the order in which applications were received. You can view the current waiting list in both PDF and Excel versions.

HUD also alerts us on the updated page that it expects to shortly issue guidance on how to submit new second component conversion requests. The second component of RAD had been set to expire last year, but was extended through the end of this year by the 2014 appropriations act. Under the second component of RAD, HUD has so far provided approval to 75 projects with more than 8,300 units.

Topics: appropriations, Mod Rehab, Program News and Notices, public housing conversion, RAD

HUD provides update on RAD, schedules Q&A for this Thursday

Posted by BEMuser on Nov 4, 2013 1:47:51 PM

In an email today, HUD announced that, as of October 25, it had received 459 applications to convert more than 76,000 public housing and Moderate Rehabilitation (Mod Rehab) units to long-term project-based Section 8 contracts under the first component of the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD). HUD has awarded initial approval to 21,097 of these units and is still reviewing applications for another 55,000 units.

Although the cap on conversions under the first component of RAD is still 60,000 units, HUD has asked Congress to raise the cap to 150,000 units and will continue accepting applications on a first-come, first-served basis until further notice.

To answer any questions PHAs may have about the continuing application process, HUD has planned a question-and-answer (Q&A) session for this Thursday, November 7, from 3 to 4 p.m. eastern time. HUD will begin the session with a progress report on applications received so far and a discussion of issues related to the 60,000-unit cap on conversions under the first component of RAD. It will then open the floor to questions. If you wish to participate in the session, click here to register.

To stay updated, follow the #RAD tag to keep up with all related blog posts or subscribe to the PIH Alert and Housing Resource Newsletter.

Topics: Mod Rehab, PIH Alert, Program News and Notices, public housing conversion, RAD

Say hello to the NMA team in Cleveland

Posted by BEMuser on Oct 22, 2013 12:32:29 PM

Are you headed to the NAHRO 2013 National Conference? Join NMA as we sponsor happy hour this Thursday, October 24, in the Exhibit Hall at the Cleveland Convention Center. Several key members of the NMA executive team will be attending:

John McKay, Chief Executive Officer. John McKay has been with NMA since 1998, and has served as chief executive officer of the company since 2007. Prior to his appointment as CEO, he was vice president of operations, spearheading the creation of the new consulting and technology services departments. This initiative introduced the first fully functional NMA Performance Portal to the affordable housing market.

Mr. McKay brings his knowledge of housing regulations and industry best practices into his role as project executive on many of NMA’s contracts with large housing authority clients and HUD. He has assessed, analyzed, and provided feedback to some of the country’s most well-run private and public organizations.

Dorian Jenkins, Vice President, Program Management. Dorian Jenkins is a dynamic and energetic leader with over 18 years of low-income housing experience. As vice president of program management, he currently heads NMA’s Chicago team, which administers 17,000 contracts on behalf of the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA).

His team has successfully maximized unit and budget utilization for the CHA’s HCV, Mod Rehab, and PBV programs, while incorporating a customer-focused culture within the CHA. Mr. Jenkins formerly served as the chief executive of a large public housing authority and has extensive experience working in an urban, political environment.

Carrol Vaughan, Vice President, Professional Services. With over 30 years of experience in the affordable housing industry, vice president of professional services Carrol Vaughan ensures that Nan McKay and Associates continues to provide the highest-quality support to the nation’s housing agencies as they assist our communities.

Prior to joining NMA, Ms. Vaughan served as executive vice president and COO with the San Diego Housing Commission, where she was responsible for all housing programs, real estate development, workforce and economic initiatives, housing finance, and homeownership programs, as well as operation functions, organizational development and training, and information technology.

Andrew Denicola, Jason Lee, Derrick Ratliff, and Edward Adams will also be attending from the NMA sales team. Stop by and say hi at booth #735!

Topics: Executive Team, Meet the NMA team, Mod Rehab, PBV, program management

HUD provides details on this Thursday's RAD meeting

Posted by NMA on Jul 8, 2013 1:51:56 PM

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced more details about the meeting this Thursday, July 11, at HUD headquarters to discuss “new flexibilities” in the rules for the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD). The meeting will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. eastern time and will follow a three-part agenda (not counting a lunch break for those who attend the meeting in person).

The first part of the meeting (9:30 to 11:00 a.m.) will be broadcast live over the Web (look for the link here) and will consist of:

The second part of the meeting (11:00 a.m. to noon) will be accessible by telephone to participants not present at the meeting (1-888-675-2535) and will consist of break-out sessions on:

  • Rent setting (access code 3299872)
  • Portfolio conversions and large multiphase projects (access code 4275158)
  • Other changes in program rules that affect mixed-finance, HOPE VI, and Moderate Rehabilitation projects (access cost 5397563)

The last part of the meeting (1:00 to 2:30 p.m.) will consist of one-on-one sessions for participants who attend in person.

If you’re planning to attend the meeting in person, HUD requests that you RSVP by tomorrow to rad@hud.gov with your name, organization, and title. For those planning to participate in the meeting remotely, no RSVP is required.

To stay updated, follow the #RAD tag to keep up with all related blog posts or subscribe to the PIH Alert and Housing Resource Newsletter.

Topics: Mod Rehab, PIH Alert, PIH notices, Program News and Notices, public housing conversion, RAD

Fifty years in housing: Part VIII

Posted by NMA on Jun 4, 2013 9:46:33 AM

NMA founder and president Nan McKay is celebrating a major milestone this year: her 50th year in housing. In an ongoing series of posts, she'll be sharing her stories of how the industry has changed over the course of decades.

Nan has previously written for the NMA blog on the topic of executive management and high performance achievement in the HCV program, and was recently profiled in the latest installment of our interview series.

The advent of Section 8

The biggest change in subsidized housing occurred in the 1970s, following the enactment of the Section 23 Leased Housing Program in 1965. Under that program, qualified low-income tenants were placed in private units leased by local housing authorities. Tenants paid a portion of the rent, and the housing authorities paid the difference between what the tenants paid and what the building's owner might have received in the open market. The housing authorities also maintained the buildings. Although this program worked well, it was really just a forerunner to the program created by the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 — Section 8.

There were several types of Section 8 housing. Section 8 New Construction and Section 8 Substantial Rehabilitation were major development and rehabilitation programs, usually owned and operated by the private sector. This type of Section 8 was project-based, in that the families under these programs had to live in the buildings. There was an Agreement to Enter into a HAP Contract (AHAP), which had to be approved by HUD prior to the start of construction or rehabilitation. When the building was ready for occupancy, a HAP contract was executed which was for all eligible Section 8 residents in the building.

It was a rent subsidy program for eligible families, and it became a very popular program. The units were either new, or substantial rehabilitation had been performed to bring them to a like-new condition. There was one problem: they were expensive to fund, because Congress provided enough funding for the life of the contract (between 20 and 40 years, depending on how they were financed). Note that at a later date, Congress required HUD to provide the "future funding" of the contracts back to the Treasury, leaving these projects on an annual funding cycle. The HUD rules for management of these contracts are in HUD Handbook 4350.3.

Another type of Section 8 was the Loan Management Set-Aside program. The LMSA program was developed by HUD primarily to provide financial assistance in the form of rental subsidies to multifamily properties subject to FHA-insured mortgage loans which are in immediate or potential financial difficulty, thereby reducing the volume of mortgage loan defaults as well as claims for FHA mortgage insurance benefits.

For example, if an owner had a Section 236 project (a property financed via an FHA below-market interest rate loan guarantee) and the rents over time had become unaffordable for low-income residents, HUD would add a Section 8 LMSA commitment to preserve the viability of the project. The Section 8 LMSA allowed families to pay a portion of their income instead of a fixed unit rent.

A similar use of Section 8 was to convert Rental Assistance Payment (RAP) subsidies and Rent Supplement subsidies in primarily privately-owned buildings to Section 8. Again, this ensured project viability for ongoing affordability.

This personal description of housing isn't meant to be

an all-inclusive timeline. For more details, you might find

Lawrence L. Thompson's A History of HUD interesting.

Most of these types of Section 8 did not affect PHAs. Exceptions were where the PHA was either the developer (very rare) or the contract administrator of a privately-owned Section 8 New Construction or Substantial Rehabilitation building. This usually happened when the PHA either had an interest in the ownership of the property or the financing of the building.

Two Section 8 programs did make a huge impact on PHAs: Section 8 Moderate Rehabilitation and Section 8 Certificates. Section 8 Mod Rehab was project-based, but had a fatal flaw: the rehabilitation which was usually needed wasn't "moderate," it was substantial. And the funding wasn't there for substantial rehab. Although some mod rehab contracts remain, most PHAs do not consider this a successful program. (The new Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD), launched last year, is an opportunity for PHAs to convert units assisted by the public housing and Mod Rehab programs to long-term Section 8 rental assistance contracts.)

The subsidy program which had the biggest impact on PHAs over time was the certificate (which later became the voucher) program. Why? Think about it. Prior to this program, families had to live in a project to be eligible for subsidy in a PHA program. Much of the public housing for families in large cities didn't have a great reputation. The projects, as they were referred to, were identifiable in several ways. Buildings had the "look" of public housing. Most businesses knew the address when it was given, which affected residents negatively when they tried to get credit in the community. There was a stigma attached to public housing,
even if you were a great tenant.

The certificate program freed families from the public housing stigma. They didn't have to live in the projects, or use the address of the projects. Instead, they could actually choose where they wanted to live and still be subsidized. Some families chose units in the same neighborhood because they wanted to be close to family and friends. Some families were scared to leave public housing because they learned that if they didn't follow the family obligations, they could be terminated — the private-owner program seemed stricter than public housing. But, overall, the certificate program provided a freedom that families had never before experienced.

Nixon fields questions at a press conference, 1973 Nixon fields questions at a press conference, 1973

Where was I during this transition? In 1970, Molly McKay was born. I worked in the elderly highrise for several years. For some of this time, I was able to bring Molly to the highrise (where she had 132 grandmas and grandpas). In 1972, John McKay was born, and I decided to work part-time, putting together an organizational transcript to bring a new county housing authority into existence (upon request by the county board), providing consulting to the elderly highrise's housing authority, and writing a book, Creating Positive Performance.

In 1973, President Nixon put a housing moratorium in effect. Congress was concerned about the costs, effectiveness, and manageability of HUD's major programs, and funding for many of HUD's programs was halted. It was a major blow to some PHAs, including the county I was working for, which was now on record and had submitted funding applications. However, there was no choice but to wait out the moratorium. Fortunately, the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 effectively ended the moratorium, and Section 8 housing was born.

While serving as executive director of a Minnesota housing authority, Nan McKay started one of the nation’s first Section 8 programs. She has devoted the past two years to redesigning NMA’s HCV Executive Management course and rewriting the HCV Executive Management Master Book. Look for her this September at the NMA Housing Conference, where she will be presenting a legislative update with her insight on the latest industry news.

Topics: Executive Team, Mod Rehab, RAD, seniors and elderly, The Housing Conference

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