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News Clips

Bloomberg, Wednesday, June 22, 2016
(RECAP: A popular narrative of the U.S. housing market has been that big city prices are locking out young buyers, feeding a cycle in which a growing number of people are forced to rent at ever higher rates as demand overwhelms supply. Throw in the fact that wages haven’t kept pace, and you have a wide swath of Americans who can't save enough to ever buy that first home. The reality may be a bit more complicated. t's true that, when combined with a lack of government support for affordable housing, this situation has pushed the number of cash-poor renters to a new high. On the other hand, the number of homeowners severely cost-burdened or moderately cost-burdened actually fell from 2013 to 2014. And while the poorest renters are more likely to find themselves in dire straits, data suggests market-rate renters are keeping up with rising rents, and are thus able to put some money away for that eventual first purchase.)
ABC News, Wednesday, June 22, 2016
(RECAP: Americans still want to own homes — if they can afford to. That's the finding of a report being released Wednesday by the Harvard University Joint Center for Housing Studies. The pressures of student debt, rising rents and the leftover wreckage from the nearly decade-old housing bust have restrained people's ability to buy, even though the dream remains alive. The report sees reasons for both optimism (more millennials are poised to leave the nest) and concern (rising numbers of renters face extreme costs).Those factors could determine whether the share of Americans who are renting keeps rising or whether the nation's home ownership rate can rebound from a near 48-year low of 63.5 percent.)
Richmond Times-Dispatch , Wednesday, June 22, 2016
(RECAP: A major redevelopment project in Richmond's East End will receive a $2.5 million grant from the state, Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced Wednesday. At an event on the lawn of the old Armstrong High School building, McAuliffe said the Richmond project will be one of the first beneficiaries of a new funding program to support affordable and mixed-income housing. The mixed-income development planned for the Armstrong site, part of a larger effort to break up poverty in the East End, will include 40 townhouses for sale and 240 rental units for seniors and families. Some rental units will serve as replacement housing for residents of the Creighton Court public housing site. McAuliffe announced that another $2.5 million grant will go to a similar mixed-income housing project in Montgomery County at the site of a former elementary school.)
The Roanoke Times, Wednesday, June 22, 2016
(RECAP: Years of planning to convert Montgomery County’s former Price’s Fork Elementary School into apartments and a local food center received a $2.5 million boost Wednesday. Montgomery County Board of Supervisors Chairman Chris Tuck announced the award of a state grant to the school redevelopment at a midday news conference at the County Government Center. The school is to become a complex of 32 apartments, some reserved for people age 55 and over and some for low- to moderate-income residents. It is also to include some sort of community kitchen and local food restaurant. The new money is coming from the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development’s Vibrant Communities Initiative.)
Washington Examiner , Tuesday, June 21, 2016
(RECAP: HUD awarded $42 million in grants to provide housing counseling for families attempting to navigate the home buying process. According the the HUD, these "housing counseling grants and the additional funding they leverage will assist more than 1.4 million households find housing, make more informed housing choices, or keep their current homes." Of this money, $40 million will go directly to existing counseling agencies and organizations. The remaining $2 million will be used to train and certify individual housing counselors.)
Loudoun Now , Tuesday, June 21, 2016
(RECAP: The Windy Hill Foundation has been awarded more than $15 million in tax credit funding from the Virginia Housing Development Authority to build Heronview Apartments, 96 units of affordable workforce housing at Kincora. The funding will help pay for the construction of a 4-story, 120,000-square-foot apartment building with 1-bedroom, 2-bedroom, and 3-bedroom apartments. They will be available for households making 50 percent of the area median income or less, with rent ranging from $915 to $1,135 per month. Heronview will also offer 10 fully handicap-accessible units available to households making 40 percent of area median income or less, with rents ranging from $505 to $965 per month.)
Augusta Free Press , Tuesday, June 21, 2016
(RECAP: Sens. Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine (both D-VA) announced today that Catholic Charities USA, headquartered in Alexandria, will receive $951,150 in federal funding, and the Virginia Housing Development Authority, located in Richmond, will receive $1,040,918. This nearly $2 million grant by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is intended to provide families and individuals in Virginia with counseling services to improve their housing conditions and help them meet the responsibilities of tenancy and homeownership.)
WSLS 10, Tuesday, June 21, 2016
(RECAP: More than two dozen homeless veterans in southwest Virginia may soon have a permanent roof over their heads. Tuesday, Wytheville broke ground on a new housing project called Freedom Lane. It is 24 affordable housing units, with 12 units built specifically for the disabled. The goal is to fill the complex entirely with veterans, but any leftover space will be opened to elderly non-vets. So far, 25 veterans have applied for Freedom Lane. It is estimated there are 150 homeless vets in the Wytheville area.)
Scotsman Guide , Tuesday, June 21, 2016
(RECAP: A bill that would make it possible for more condo buyers to get financing through the FHA has run up against inertia in the U.S. Senate after gaining unanimous support in the U.S. House. H.R. 3700, which passed in the House 427-0 in February, has yet to be introduced in the Senate. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) last week put out a call to action among its 1.2 million members to pressure the Senate to introduce and move along a companion bill in time to get it passed this year. NAR is specifically supporting Title III of the bill, which eases restrictions on condominiums. The FHA has a hard rule that disqualifies buyers from seeking FHA financing if less than 50 percent of the condominium units are owner-occupied. The bill would lower that requirement to a 35 percent owner-occupied ratio.)
Alexandria Gazette Packet , Tuesday, June 21, 2016
(RECAP: Living in Alexandria isn’t cheap and for many locals who need affordable housing, it seems to be getting more expensive by the day. Many of the rent increases across the city come with property owners attempt to renovate and rebrand their formerly affordable housing. Hunting Point, a pair of apartment towers near the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, came under new ownership in 2013. Since that time, it has steadily continued to increase rents and push current residents out to redevelop the property into luxury housing. Residents being pushed out of their homes is beginning to impact Alexandria’s nonprofits as well. Mark Moreau, intake and data quality coordinator for Bridges to Independence, says local affordable housing groups have felt the impact of increasing rents and housing loss. As the city continues to hemorrhage market affordable housing, the committed affordable housing can’t keep up, despite a relatively “good year” in 2015.)
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