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Become a Specialist in Housing Credit Management® (SHCM®) Company!

The three national associations sponsoring the Specialist in Housing Credit Management® certification program invite your company to become a Specialist in Housing Credit Management® (SHCM®) Company, a corporate designation created specifically to honor management companies that successfully maintain a significant portion of their properties and staff to the high standards of the SHCM certification program. The SHCM program, developed especially for management companies involved with properties developed and operated under the Low Income Tax Credit (LIHTC) program, is sponsored by the National Affordable Housing Management Association (NAHMA), the National Apartment Association Education Institute (NAAEI), and LeadingAge (formerly AAHSA, the American Association of Housing and Services for the Aging).

Earning the SHCM Company® designation publicly demonstrates that a company is among the finest managers of LIHTC housing in the industry.

For more details on how to become a SHCM Company, click on the link below.

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Tax Issues and Tax Reform

"Key LIHTC Changes Proposed"
"The Importance of Tax Expenditures’ Distributional Impact"

State and Local Activities

"City to Consider Another Affordable Housing Bond"
"23 Wisconsin Developments Receive LIHTCs"

Green Building

"Net-Zero Energy Apartments to Open in Church Hill, VA"

Management and Compliance

"Rent History Emerging as Key Data"

Market and Program trends

"GSEs to Scale Back Multifamily Activity as Private Sector Looms"

Industry Trends

"Section 8 Housing Does Not De-Value Neighborhood, Increase Crime: Study Says"

Association News

Support an Increase in Housing Funding Allocation in FY14
Administration Releases its FY 2014 Housing Budget
NAHMA and NAA to Collocate National Education Conferences in June 2013

Tax Issues and Tax Reform

Key LIHTC Changes Proposed
Affordable Housing Finance (04/13) Kimura, Donna

The Obama administration has proposed key new changes to the low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) program in the government's fiscal 2014 budget plan. "We believe the tax credit is an absolutely critical tool for creating and preserving affordable housing," said Shaun Donovan, secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, in a call with reporters. The changes include assisting states to better convert some private-activity bond cap into authority to allocate additional LIHTCs, and letting housing developments comply with an income-averaging rule under which the income limits for at least 40 percent of the units in a project, not averaging greater than 60 percent of area median income (AMI). None of the units would be occupied by those earning more than 80 percent of the AMI. The proposed changes also address a formula that produces the 9 percent and 4 percent credit rates. Another proposal is to make housing credits beneficial to real estate investment trusts (REITs), which would help increase demand for LIHTCs.
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The Importance of Tax Expenditures’ Distributional Impact
Novogradac Journal of Tax Credits (04/13) Vol. 04, No. 4 Novogradac, Michael J.

The Senate Budget Committee held a hearing on March 5 on ways to reduce the deficit, such as by "eliminating wasteful spending in the individual and corporate tax code." This could potentially impact such tax credits as low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC), new markets tax credit (NMTC), historic tax credit (HTC), the renewable energy production tax credit (PTC), or investment tax credit (ITC). Jared Bernstein at the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities suggested at the hearing that three things should be considered when determining the usefulness of tax expenditures--revenue forgone, efficiency, and fairness. In terms of revenue forgone, the LIHTC, NMTC, HTC and energy tax credits are surpassed by many larger tax expenditures, but in terms of efficiency, tax credits are a more efficient way for the federal government to support affordable housing than with cash grant programs. Bernstein further said certain individual income tax expenditures can raise pre-tax trends toward higher income inequality as their benefits flow disproportionately to those at the top of income scale. His comments did not address corporate tax expenditures in regard to fairness, but in light of the significant benefits for low- and moderate-income taxpayers generated by the tax credits described above. The LIHTC is a purchased tax benefit, and the net economic benefit of the LIHTC largely goes to low-income families, not to corporations. Without the LIHTC, more than 80,000 affordable housing rental units would not have been built, and over five years, more than 400,000 low-income families would be adversely impacted.
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State and Local Activities

City to Consider Another Affordable Housing Bond
Fox 7 (Austin, Tex.) (03/04/13)

City Council members in Austin, Texas, are starting to discuss another affordable housing bond that could be on the ballot this coming November, or May or November of 2014. Council members say if they do decide to place the bond on the ballot, they will need to do a better job campaigning and educating the community on how that money will be spent. City of Austin demographers report that the average rent in Austin is more than $900 per month, compelling many people who work inside the city to live away from it. Foundation Communities, a non-profit that provides affordable housing and support services for low-income residents, has a six month wait-list for some of its properties. The $55 million from the last affordable housing bond passed in 2006 has been nearly depleted. Part of it will be used to build Capital Studios, a complex of 135 apartments with rents ranging from $400-650 a month. The project's groundbreaking is expected for April and should be completed by mid-2014, marking the first affordable housing complex constructed in the downtown area in more than 40 years. The housing is intended for those working in downtown and earning less than $27,000 annually. Ten of the units will be reserved for working musicians and artists, while others will be set aside for people who have been homeless, according to Walter Moreau with Foundation Communities.
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23 Wisconsin Developments Receive LIHTCs
Apartment Finance Today (04/13)

The Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) has selected 23 developments in the state to receive approximately $11.5 million in low-income housing tax credits (LIHTCs) in order to create 1,006 affordable housing units. "In order to revitalize our state's economy, affordable housing and economic development must play key roles," says Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch. "Developments being awarded tax credits today address local housing needs, and they stimulate economic growth through family-supporting jobs for our communities. The beauty of these tax credits is that they provide opportunities for private developers to fund projects that they might not ordinarily be available to finance on their own." WHEDA received 59 applications requesting nearly $33 million in tax credits this year.
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Green Building

Net-Zero Energy Apartments to Open in Church Hill, VA
Richmond Times-Dispatch (VA) (04/01/13) Hazard, Carol

The Better Housing Coalition opened seven net-zero energy apartments in Richmond, Va., on April 1 for low-income people 55 and older. The building with high-performance insulation harvests energy through photovoltaic panels to produce electricity and solar thermal panels to produce hot water. As a net-zero building, the building will not use electricity from Dominion Virginia Power unless the sun does not shine for several days and it has used up its surplus energy. The electrical meter — a net metering system — runs forward on rare occasions when electricity is used, but it also runs backward, providing a credit for energy that is not used. On sunny days when it is cranking out more electricity than needed, it returns electricity to the grid that other Dominion Virginia Power customers can use. About 800 of Dominion Virginia Power's 2.3 million customers have been connected to net metering systems, says utility spokesman Jim Norvelle. The system, which was authorized in 2000, is relatively new. Each unit at Beckstoffer's has an energy recovery ventilation system that brings fresh air in and takes stale air out. Heating and air conditioning is provided through ductless mini-split systems, eliminating cold or hot spots and providing a uniform temperature. The building was designed to benefit from as much natural light as possible from southern exposure. The total construction cost was $854,000. Federal renewable energy tax credits and tax credits for affordable housing helped make the project a feasible investment, says Bob Newman, vice president and chief operating officer of the Better Housing Coalition. "By being among the first net-zero, multifamily developers in Virginia, we hope these apartments will serve as a working model for other housing developers and help galvanize the net-zero market to lower future costs," he states.
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Management and Compliance

Rent History Emerging as Key Data
Apartment Finance Today (03/13) Kimura, Donna

Rent is the largest expense for many people but is typically not used in determining a person's overall credit score. In the multifamily sector, rent history represents a missing piece of information that could be used to evaluate potential residents. Experian RentBureau recently collected rental history data and provide it to rental screening companies to help owners and property managers make better leasing decisions. Brannan Johnston, vice president and managing director at Experian RentBureau, says rent payment history can provide managers with critical data as well as an opportunity to build their credit. "Many people who may not have much credit history have been regularly paying rent on time," he says. "That's the real opportunity, to get credit for their responsibility." The firm has been collaborating with the Credit Builders Alliance on a pilot program to encourage affordable housing organizations and other entities to report rent data. ALCO Management based in Memphis, Tenn., currently operates about 7,000 affordable and conventional apartments across the Southeast. It uses rent history data along with credit and criminal history when screening potential residents.
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Market and Program trends

GSEs to Scale Back Multifamily Activity as Private Sector Looms
Apartment Finance Today (03/13) Machak, Lindsay

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) intends to reduce the role of the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) in the multifamily space by about 10 percent. In 2012, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac combined to finance approximately $62.8 billion in multifamily deals, so 10 percent, or about $6 billion in liquidity, must come from other sources this year. The changes were planned as part of the FHFA’s priorities for 2013 and to spur the creation of a new housing finance landscape. FHFA Acting Director Edward DeMarco announced the proposals during the annual conference of the National Association for Business Economics held March 4. "It sends a direction, it sends a statement, but I don't think it practically will have that big of an impact," says Guy Johnson, president and CEO of Johnson Capital. "There’s still plenty of liquidity." He points out the strong volume the GSEs showed in 2012, and said even with a 10 percent reduction, the GSEs would continue to have a good 2013 at approximately $54 billion. In addition, commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) loans are expected to gather momentum in the next year. Currently 10-year CMBS loans are pricing at around 4.25 percent, which while higher than the GSE pricing, is lower than it has been in years. "Insurance companies would like to do a little bit more multifamily too to diversify their portfolios,” Johnson observes. "So it’ll cover it. It’s coming off a gigantic year, so it should be fine."
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Industry Trends

Section 8 Housing Does Not De-Value Neighborhood, Increase Crime: Study Says
Realty Today (03/29/13)

New York University's Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy and Moelis Institute for Affordable Housing Policy have released a study that examined how increases in the number of renters with Section 8 vouchers affect crime levels in urban areas. The study, "Investigating the Relationship Between Housing Voucher Use and Crime," examined housing voucher and crime data from 10 large U.S. cities and found that an increase in the number of households using vouchers had no effect on crime levels in a particular neighborhood. The study's authors noted that crime levels are often already high in neighborhoods that have a higher number of voucher households. Researchers said their findings refute the common belief that the presence of housing voucher recipients in a neighborhood causes crime to increase. This belief has led to fear and resistance to the presence of Section 8 renters, says study co-author Ingrid Gould Ellen, the faculty co-director of the Furman Center.
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Association News

Support an Increase in Housing Funding Allocation in FY14

Last year, 1700 organizations across the country endorsed a letter requesting that the appropriations committees of Congress provide the largest possible allocation to the Transportation-HUD appropriations subcommittees so that HUD programs could be funded at the highest level possible in this very tight federal budget environment. Without a big allocation, funding for Project Based Section 8, HOME, CDBG, PIH, Section 202 and Section 811 may be less than needed to adequately fund HUD’s programs. The goal this year is to recruit 2000 housing and transportation groups to sign a similar letter.

The effort is being led by the Campaign for Housing and Community Development Funding (CHCDF) and other national organizations who are circulating a letter to House and Senate appropriators calling for an increase in the FY14 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) 302(b) subcommittee allocation. The 302(b) allocation determines the funding that will be available for the HUD and Transportation budgets in FY 2014. It is critically important to have as high an allocation as possible.

The letter calls for an increase in the allocation, noting the importance of affordable housing, community development and transportation funding to low income households and underserved communities including the nation’s most vulnerable – seniors and persons with disabilities. The THUD allocation was 24% lower in FY13 than in FY10.

The campaign's FY14 letter is now open for national, state, and local organizations and elected officials to sign to demonstrate their support for increasing funding for the THUD subcommittee in FY14. Without an increase, funding for all HUD programs is in jeopardy. The deadline for signatures is April 30.

To view the letter visit, or click on the link below. To sign onto the letter, visit

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Administration Releases its FY 2014 Housing Budget

On April 10, President Obama unveiled a 2014 budget proposal that would achieve $1.8 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade with a balanced approach to funding critical federal housing programs so that the nation’s most vulnerable will continue to receive housing assistance. It also assumes the reversal of sequestration which is unfolding now with federal agency furloughs and cuts that will potentially mean the loss of rental assistance for the nation’s most vulnerable.

For the renewal of Project Based Section 8 contracts, the Administration has requested $10.27 billion -- an amount that could renew all contracts for a full 12 months if and only if sequestration is reversed. In testimony before the House of Representatives appropriations subcommittee, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan testified that if sequestration is not reversed, $11.5 billion is needed to renewal all contracts for the full 12 months. In FY 2014, 15,900 contracts will need to be renewed representing 1.1 million housing units. HUD anticipates that without the $11.5 billion, only 6200 contracts can be renewed for the full 12 months. The remaining 9700 contracts, representing 670,000 units, will be renewed for only an average of 9 months. LeadingAge has joined other industry groups in Washington, including NLHA, NAHMA, NAHB, NMHC, NAA and NAR, in sending a letter to the appropriators requesting $11.5 billion so that shortfunding of section 8 contracts can be avoided.

The budget recommends $400 million for the Section 202 program, including $310 million for PRAC renewals, $70 million for service coordinator renewals, and $20 million for a demonstration program for new housing and supportive services models. The budget also includes $22 million in carry over funding for ALCP and Service Enriched Housing grants although there is no new money in the budget. It also includes a carryover of $32 million for the Senior Preservation Rental Assistance Contracts (SPRAC). HUD issued an advance notice of a process to award SPRAC for seniors without rental assistance to the pre- 1974 Section 202 properties that refinance and preserve the properties. LeadingAge and NAHMA along with other organizations submitted comments on the advance notice for the award of SPRACs in March and HUD is expected to digest the comments and announce the availability of funding by September. As a result, the funding that had been available prior to the proposed regulation will, in effect, become available during FY 2014 and no new funding was requested. The SPRAC funding when available will be critical to preservation transactions, many of them with Low Income Housing Tax Credits.

For an overview of the HUD budget, click on the link below.

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NAHMA and NAA to Collocate National Education Conferences in June 2013

Registration and Housing Information Now Available!!!

The National Affordable Housing Management Association (NAHMA) will again hold its annual summer meeting in conjunction with the National Apartment Association (NAA) Education Conference & Exposition on June 19-22, 2012 in sunny San Diego, CA. The 2013 NAA Education Conference & Exposition is the largest event in the multifamily housing industry and includes world-class educators and a star-studded lineup of speakers.

Through this partnership, both conferences will address the critical needs of affordable housing communities and the apartment industry as a whole. Discounts will be available to attendees who register for both conferences. These discounts will provide a cost neutral solution to your training and development needs.

NAA headline speakers include founder of The Virgin Group, Sir Richard Branson as the Thursday Keynote speaker and graffiti artist, author and entrepreneur Erik Wahl as the Friday General Session speaker and Bert Jacobs, Co-founder & Chief Executive Optimist of Life is good® as a speaker for the Special Saturday session.

At the NAHMA Public Policy Issues Forum, to be held as a full-day meeting on Wednesday, June 19, discussions will focus on public policy related to federal legislative and regulatory initiatives that impact all of the affordable housing programs, from HUD programs (project-based Section, Section 8 tenant vouchers, Section 202 senior housing, and Section 811 special needs housing); to the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program; to Rural Housing Service programs (Sections 515, 538 and the revitalization program). In addition to its full day of meetings on June 19, NAHMA will be providing affordable housing-specific sessions as part of the NAA conference – for details, see below.

MORE DETAILS COMING SOON on two exciting events that will be held in conjunction with the NAHMA meeting: (separate registrations for both events apply):

The free NAHMA-hosted party will be held, Wed. evening, June 19 at Fluxx.

The NAHMA Educational Foundation will be hosting a fundraising event on Tues. evening, June 18.

NAHMA members who register for the NAA conference may use the NAHMA member discount code provided below for a $200 discount off the NAA full conference registration rate based on the rate at the time registration is made.

How to Register:

Meeting Registrations for the NAHMA and NAA events are separate - please register separately for each of the events you would like to attend:
1) Registration for the NAHMA Public Policy Issues Forum on Wed. June 19, will be available online at the NAHMA meeting webpage by early April 2013; click on the link below. A preliminary agenda for the NAHMA Policy Forum is posted at this webpage.
2) Registration for the NAA Conference June 19-22 2013, is now open. Click on and use promo code NAHMA13 for the NAHMA member discount ($200 off NAA full conference registration rate based on the rate at the time registration is made)
(NAA registration rates increase on Feb. 1, April 19 and again after June 6, 2013)

For Hotel Reservations:
If you are attending both the NAHMA and NAA meetings, you can make reservations one of two ways:
1) follow the prompts for reserving your hotel accommodations after you register online for the NAA conference; or
2) use the NAHMA print hotel reservation form linked at the NAHMA meeting webpage, linked below
If you are attending only the NAHMA meeting, please click on the link below and download and print the hotel reservation form, and return as noted on the form's instructions
(Hotel reservation deadline for either online or via NAHMA form is May 29, 2013, or earlier if room blocks fill up.)

NAHMA Sessions to be Held During the NAA Conference:

Session 1, Thurs. morning, 9 am – 10:30 am, June 20, 2013: NAHMA Presents Connecting the Trends: Impacts of the New Fiscal Reality on Affordable Housing
Industry experts will analyze driving trends in the economics of providing affordable multifamily housing, and will help attendees understand and prepare for this new reality. Key discussion areas will include:
a) Federal budget cuts will be on the horizon for a while, and will impact all programs;
b) As a result of reduced Federal spending, there will be changes in State and local government approaches to affordable housing;
c) To survive, property management companies will need to find operational changes and solutions to save money; and,
d) There will be changes in preservation and production strategies as a result of across-the-board reduced resources.

Session 2, Thurs. morning, 10:45 am – 12:15 pm, June 20, 2013: NAHMA Presents Innovative Technology and Green Solutions in Affordable Housing
Industry experts will present and analyze innovative technology and green solutions for improved operations and cost-savings in affordable multifamily housing. Attendees will learn tried-and-true approaches to maximize innovative, cost-effective and efficient solutions. Key discussion areas will include:
a) The Top 10 easiest, cheapest and most effective technology solutions for affordable multifamily housing;
b) The Top 10 easiest, cheapest and most effective green solutions for affordable multifamily housing;
c) Cutting-edge technology and green solutions – is it hype or real savings for some of these trendy solutions?
d) Tracking and measuring your ROI.

Session 3, Friday morning, 9:45 am – 11:15 am, June 21, 2013: NAHMA Presents Inspiring New Directions in Providing Niche Affordable Housing
Industry experts will present and analyze new trends in affordable housing, specifically finding niche programs and serving vulnerable populations. Attendees will learn about new funding and programs for specialized programs and populations. Key discussion areas will include:
a) Veterans – an overview of programs and key factors in serving returning and homeless veterans;
b) Vulnerable populations – a look at programs focusing on transitional age use (persons aging out of foster programs) and supportive housing for homeless and special needs residents;
c) Senior housing – a discussion of emerging trends and programs, factors to consider for frail elderly, aging baby boomers, and other senior housing issues; and
d) Workforce housing – a look at the housing and transportation affordability index, mixed-income housing, and other key current issues.

Session 4, Friday afternoon, 2:15 pm – 3:45 pm, June 21, 2013: NAHMA Presents Connecting the Trends: Case Studies in Innovations in Affordable Housing
Industry experts will present case studies showcasing the key concepts from NAHMA’s earlier sessions during the conference, including new trends resulting from today’s fiscal realities, innovative technology and green solutions, and inspiring new directions in providing niche affordable housing. Attendees will learn real and practical applications of all of the latest emerging trends impacting affordable multifamily housing.
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April 2013