Housing Matters blog

Annual Mitten Drive

Posted Dec 2, 2014 at 4:14 pm by Victoria Johnson

Mitten Drive 2014 PicThis year VHFA will be donating stuffed mittens to benefit the children in programs offered by the Sara Holbrook Youth Center. Last year the Sara Holbrook Youth Center served 51 preschool and elementary children and 600 teens through playgroups and direct advocacy. Throughout their various community programs, the Sara Holbrook Youth Center helped over 650 children. Time to break out your knitting needles or put on your shopping shoes to support children in need during the holiday season. Please drop off mittens, gloves or hats to the VHFA office by Monday, December 15th. VHFA staff will fill mittens with candy canes and tie with ribbons for the children in time for the holidays.

164 St. Paul Street, Burlington 802-864-5743

Thank you!

Young professional housing survey report

Posted Mar 3, 2015 at 12:12 pm by Marina Demas

PictureIn 2014, the Lake Chamber of Commerce, through its Burlington Young Professionals group, created the Young Professionals Advocacy Task Force with a specific focus on housing issues in and around Burlington. The Task Force compiled a survey to better understand the needs and concerns of Vermont’s young workforce.

400 individuals responded to the survey, with the majority of people between the age of 26 and 35. According to the survey results, almost half of those young professionals who responded are dissatisfied with their current living situation. Across all age groups, the primary reasons for their dissatisfaction were the need for more space (58%) and the desire to own but inability to afford it (56%) . The largest chunk of respondents pays between $500 and $1500 per month in rent or mortgage.  Almost half pay more than 30% of their take home income in rental or mortgage payments. Check out the rest of this report.

VHFA is currently pursuing new ways our programs can work even better for the first time homebuyers many young professionals strive to be. We are excited by bills currently being considered by the Vermont legislature, supported by the Lake Champlain Chamber of Commerce, that would expand VHFA’s ability to offer down payment assistance to first time buyers

Need an affordable apartment?

Posted Mar 3, 2015 at 8:19 am by Marina Demas

Need an affordable apartment or know someone who does?

There are vacancies in a number of apartment complexes across the state, according to the Vermont Directory of Affordable Rental Housing. Find out more about particular units by visiting the vacancy profiles on line.

504 Coordinator Training Event

Posted Feb 20, 2015 at 1:13 pm by Marina Demas

504 Coordinator Training On Thursday, April 9, 2015, Vermont Housing Managers Association (VHMA), Granite State Managers Association (GSMA) and New England Affordable Housing Management Association (NEAHMA) are co-sponsoring a one day training.  The training is 504 Coordinator Training with Debbie Piltch.  This training will examine Federal requirements to provide persons with disabilities reasonable accommodation throughout the occupancy cycle. It will shed light on the confusion regarding what a housing provider’s legal obligations are in the area of reasonable accommodation. The training will also discuss how state and local law may have an impact on a site’s obligation as well. In addition, VHMA, GSMA and NEAHMA will review the role of a 504 coordinator in general and in the context of reasonable accommodations as well as the 504 grievance procedure.

The training will be held at the Fireside Inn & Suites in West Lebanon, NH.  The cost is $125 per person if you register before Friday, February 27th; after February 27th the cost will increase to $150 per person.  Non-membership rate is $200 per person   The cost of the registration also includes lunch.

To register for the training please click on the following link and it will walk you through the steps.  http://www.cvent.com/d/vrqnjq/1Q

If you should have any questions regarding the registration process you may contact Sarah.Kaufmann@neahma.org.  If you should have any questions about the training, are in need of any reasonable accommodations or have any food allergies, please contact Heidi.setien@vt.usda.gov.

HUD seeks sites for Summer Food Service Program

Posted Feb 18, 2015 at 9:59 am by Marina Demas

sfsp-logoThis summer, the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Boston Office of Multifamily Housing is partnering with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to administer their Summer Food Service Program (SFSP). To help SFSP reach their 2015 goal of 200 million meals served nationwide, HUD is seeking capable and cooperative multifamily developments in Vermont to become a SFSP site, partnering with local sponsors and community volunteers in Vermont throughout the summer to serve meals to children and teens in need and reduce the nutrition gap between school and summer. In order to make an impact this summer HUD is undertaking this outreach now with a goal of identifying suitable sites by April of this year.

USDA Rural Development invested more than $125 million in Vermont communities, businesses and homes

Posted Feb 16, 2015 at 9:46 am by Marina Demas

indexUSDA Rural Development invested more than $125 million in Vermont communities, businesses and homes in 2014. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced Wednesday that Vermont communities, families and businesses benefited from $125 million in USDA Rural Development (RD) grants, loans and loan guarantees in Federal Fiscal Year 2014. http://www.rd.usda.gov/newsroom/news-release/usda-rural-development-invested-more-125-million-vermont-communities

“These funds helped thousands of Vermonters find affordable homes, find good paying jobs, and access vital community services,” said USDA Rural Development State Director Ted Brady. VHFA has been a proud partner of Vermont’s USDA Rural Development office for many years.  A homebuyer who qualifies for a VHFA-Rural Development mortgage can get among the lowest interest rates available for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages.  Check out today’s rates and read more about applying for this sought-after home mortgage program. www.vhfa.org. VHFA and Rural Development staff will also begin offering joint Realtor continuing education credits in 2015.

Celebrating Valentine’s Day and the United Way

Posted Feb 13, 2015 at 3:39 pm by Leslie Black-Plumeau

VHFA’s SQL expert Lucas Henderson and multifamily management officer Erin Philbrick are serving up delicious Valentine’s treats to paying customers today. All proceeds go to the United Way!

A team of VHFA go-getters run a series of events, like the Valentine’s Day treat cart, that contribute to the staff’s total annual donation of $8,000 to $12,000 to the United Way.

Photo by Rick Jean.

Committee seeks proposals for local investment financing

Posted Feb 10, 2015 at 12:28 pm by Leslie Black-Plumeau

Pursuant to Section treasurer220 of Act 199 of 2014, the Local Investment Advisory Committee (LIAC), chaired by the State Treasurer, will receive proposals for local investment financing from February 2, 2015 to March 2, 2015.  Read the Local Investment Advisory Committee Report for details pertaining to the work of the Committee.

Proposals for financing will be considered in the following areas:

  • Housing and Energy;
  • Transportation;
  • Municipal Infrastructure; and
  • Financing Post-Secondary Education.

Municipalities, social services providers, state agencies and authorities, regional planning commissions and similar organizations are eligible to apply. Any questions regarding eligibility should be directed to the State Treasurer’s office. Read more on the Treasurer’s office website.

Please direct all proposals and contact to Tim Lueders-Dumont in the Treasurer’s office at tim.lueders-dumont@state.vt.us or 802-828-1451.


Job opportunity: Human Resources Manager position open at VHFA

Posted Feb 6, 2015 at 2:13 pm by Leslie Black-Plumeau

VHFA is seeking a natural leader to administer all of the Agency’s Human Resource functions. HR responsibilities include the management ofthe Agency’s performance management system – providing support and coaching to supervisors and staff; benefits administration (including health insurance and 403(b) plan administration); recruitment; payroll; training; ensuring compliance; and wellness for our 38-employee company.

Located in the heart of downtown Burlington, Vermont Housing Finance Agency is a dynamic small-sized employer with a mission to finance and promote affordable housing opportunities for low- and moderate- income Vermonters.  VHFA offers a competitive salary and our excellent benefits package is summarized online.

A Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent related work experience, and a minimum of 5 years Human Resource Management experience is required, including extensive experience in the areas of performance management, compensation and benefits administration. Two years supervisory experience is required and PHR/SPHR certification is highly desirable. High-level proficiency in all Microsoft Office products is absolutely required. Strong written and verbal communications skills as well as the ability to handle sensitive and confidential information with discretion are mandatory. Must be highly organized, flexible, able to set priorities, meet deadlines, and enjoy and excel at working with a wide range of individuals, internal and external to the Agency.

A complete job description for this position is posted online. Please read the job description and required qualifications for this position carefully. The successful applicant will have to get up to speed quickly and therefore, we will only consider those who meet all the criteria listed.

Please send cover letter, resume, salary requirement, and references to the Human Resources Department at HR@vhfa.org by March 6th.


An Equal Opportunity Employer


Richmond Terrace receives Efficiency Vermont Major Renovation Honor award

Posted Feb 6, 2015 at 10:55 am by Leslie Black-Plumeau

Richmond TerraceRichmond Terrace, a 16-unit affordable rental housing complex for seniors, was awarded the Major Renovation Honor award from Efficiency Vermont last week. The complex underwent a deep energy retrofit and capital improvement program in 2014.

Financed through a construction and permanent loan from VHFA, renovations included improvement of the thermal envelope, installation of air source heat pumps for heating and cooling, new windows, and a 13.3 KW ground mount solar PV array.

David Adams, VHFA’s Chief of Program Operations, attended the conference and said, “It is always exciting to see the achievements made by affordable housing developments, like Richmond Terrace, recognized by the broader community. Having sustainable and efficient properties as a part of our portfolio is a major focus of VHFA, and we’re proud to have financed this work.”

Cathedral Square (owner) and Duncan Wisniewski Architecture (project architect) received the award at Efficiency Vermont’s Better Buildings by Design Conference on February 4, 2015. Efficiency Vermont’s “Best of the Best in Commercial Building Design & Construction” awards recognize innovative and integrated design approaches for energy efficiency in Vermont’s commercial, institutional, industrial and multifamily buildings.

Photo:  Sally McCay

Need an affordable apartment?

Posted Jan 30, 2015 at 9:12 am by Marina Demas

rentalNeed an affordable apartment or know someone who does?

There are vacancies in a number of apartment complexes across the state, according to the Vermont Directory of Affordable Rental Housing. Find out more about particular units by visiting the vacancy profiles on line.


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