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Posted by: Leslie Black-Plumeau on May 24, 2016 - 2:59pm

A recent report from the Bipartisan Policy Center describes the need for a comprehensive national approach to integrating health care and housing for seniors. To counteract the increasing number of vulnerable Americans experiencing hardship as they age, the report makes the following recommendations:

  • Build more affordable housing for seniors;
  • Enable more seniors to age in place;
  • Better integrate senior health care and housing; and
  • Embrace technology to support successful aging.

To address the lack of affordable housing available for seniors, the Center recommends significantly expanding the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit and creating a new federal program that uses project-based rental assistance and the housing credit to finance new construction and attract funding for health care programs.

Among seniors surveyed recently by AARP, 88 percent said they would like to stay in their current home for as long as possible. However, according to the Bipartisan Policy Center, only 3.8 percent of housing units in America are equipped for people with moderate mobility difficulties. Additionally, the report estimates that a fifth of all seniors are likely to have financial assets of less than $5,000. To address the mismatch between housing needs and resources, the Center recommends a new Modification Assistance Initiative.

The report also cites Vermont’s Support and Services at Home (SASH) program as a promising model for improving resident health and slowing the growth of Medicare expenditures.

Posted by: Leslie Black-Plumeau on May 20, 2016 - 9:36am

Although most non-vacation condominiums sold each year in Vermont are near Burlington, several towns in other parts of the state also play an important role in this segment of the housing market. About 80 percent of all primary residence condo sales in Vermont each year take place in 10 towns--7 inside Chittenden County and 3 beyond its boundaries.

The median price of all primary condos sold in the state from 2010 through 2015 remains unchanged at $189,000-190,000, according to our recent analysis of Vermont Property Transfer Tax records. To learn more about local price fluctuations, we took a closer look at sales data in five towns. When comparing prices in 2010-2012 with 2013-2015, median prices increased in Burlington and Montpelier, stayed about the same in South Burlington and St. Albans and decreased in Hartford.

Posted by: Leslie Black-Plumeau on May 10, 2016 - 9:38am

After sitting vacant for six years, the Gevries mobile home park in Addison County has started redevelopment.  VHFA provided housing tax credits that will cover an estimated 60 percent of the project’s costs and ensure that the new 14-home community will be affordable for low-income renters of all ages. By installing VERMOD high-performance duplex homes, developers Cathedral Square Corporation and Addison County Community Trust anticipate that the neighborhood will achieve net-zero annual energy costs, another critical component of its long-term affordability. 

Watch Local22’s story last week about the project. 

Photo: Demolition begins of the former Gevries mobile home park. Photo by Craig Peltier, VT Housing & Conservation Board.







Posted by: Leslie Black-Plumeau on May 5, 2016 - 9:16am

Executive Director Sarah Carpenter joined partners from Cathedral Square and other agencies to launch construction of Elm Place, a 30-unit building for seniors in Milton. Elm Place will be Vermont’s first multi-family building certified to Passive House standards. Better windows and doors, added insulation and improved air sealing are expected to enable the building to use roughly 65 percent less energy. 

The project has an anticipated opening date of March 2017. Residents will benefit from Support and Services at Home (SASH) care coordination which supports aging in place through an on-site SASH coordinator and part-time wellness nurse. Two apartments are fully ADA accessible and all apartments are adaptable.

Housing tax credits allocated by VHFA will cover roughly 75 percent of the costs of developing Elm Place. Other funders include People’s United Bank, the Vermont Community Development Program, the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board, the HOME Investment Partnership, the Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, Efficiency Vermont, the TD Charitable Foundation, Commons Energy, Enterprise Community Partners, The Housing Assistance Council, Vermont Gas, and in-kind support provided by the Town of Milton. Read more.

Photo courtesy of Cathedral Square Corporation. Sarah Carpenter (far left) with agency partners at Elm Place groundbreaking, Milton, Vermont, 5/2/2016.


Posted by: Leslie Black-Plumeau on May 3, 2016 - 12:39pm

Thanks to a local survey commissioned by Vermont State Housing Authority,  the Fair Market Rent standards used for HUD's Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers in Chittenden, Franklin and Grand Isle counties will be revised upward effective today.  The levels established in December 2015 by HUD were 16 percent lower than the new levels. 

The survey of rents in the Burlington metro area was funded by VHFA and other partner agencies.  Read more.