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VHFA News

Posted by: Will White on April 17, 2018 - 2:49pm

VHFA had a great 2017!

VHFA financed $76 million in home mortgages to help 483 households move into affordable homes. VHFA’s programs saved homebuyers an average of $5560 through the ASSIST down payment assistance program and other closing cost savings, enabling many young Vermonters to purchase their first home with less financial strain.

Once again, VHFA was the single largest funding source for the construction and rehabilitation of affordable apartments in Vermont, providing $75 million in housing tax credits and loans to grow and preserve 823 homes for low-income renters.

VHFA continued to serve as a coordinator, advocate, and information resource for partner housing organizations and policy makers to advance its mission to promote affordable housing opportunities for low- and moderate-income Vermonters.

Reflecting staff enthusiasm and commitment to this mission, VHFA was yet again ranked as one of the top five small places to work in Vermont by the Vermont Business Magazine and the Vermont Chamber of Commerce.

You can view a PDF of our full annual report here: https://www.vhfa.org/documents/publications/VHFA-Annual-Report-2017_1_0.pdf

Posted by: Heather Kvasnak on April 17, 2018 - 9:20am

If you own a home please join Champlain Housing Trust for this educational Homeowner University.  Learn how to maximize your biggest investment, your home.  Learn how to maintain, manage and protect your home and how to plan and pay for improvements.  Check out the schedule for the day and enroll today!

 

When?

April 28, 2018 - 9:00am to 4:00pm

 

Where?

Champlain Housing Trust - 88 King Street, Burlington, VT

 

Cost?

$25 per household, includes lunch

 

How to register?

Email education@getahome.org or call 802-861-7394

 

Need more information?

Go to www.getahome.org/homeowner-u or check out the schedule for the event here.

 

Posted by: Mia Watson on April 16, 2018 - 10:06am

Attention lenders and affordable housing developers: The 2018 AHP is coming!

The Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) of Boston’s Affordable Housing Program 2018 funding application period opens on Monday, June 11, four weeks earlier than usual. The program awards grants and low-interest loans through member institutions to organizations promoting homeownership and rental housing for households with incomes at or below 80 percent of the area median income. Approximately $18.1 million in AHP subsidy is available. Applications are due by Thursday, August 2.

Developers and members interested in the program should register for the AHP training session, which will be held in Burlington on June 26. Additional regional AHP trainings will be held in Springfield, MA on June 14 and Concord, NH on July 10. On-line webinars are also available. For more information and to register, visit their website.  

Posted by: Mia Watson on April 12, 2018 - 2:56pm

Please join VHFA in celebrating Fair Housing Month this April. This year is special as we mark the 50th anniversary of the passage of the federal Fair Housing Act.

On April 11, 1968, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1968, expanding the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VIII of the act, which is commonly known as the Fair Housing Act, prohibited discrimination concerning the sale, rental, and financing of housing based on race, religion, national origin, sex, (and as amended) handicap and family status. The act was passed after a long difficult political and social struggle for equal protection under the law. Advocates in and out of Congress pushed for adoption of a fair housing bill for years but did not achieve passage until one week after the assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Fair housing was one of the central goals for Dr. King and the civil rights movement. Prior to the passage of the Fair Housing Act, many communities around the country had laws that explicitly forbade white homeowners from selling to black buyers in order to keep neighborhoods segregated. Mortgage lenders often denied service or raised rates for buyers in majority minority neighborhoods. Landlords could legally refuse to rent to minorities, which often left minority renters with few decent quality housing options.  In response to these injustices, Dr. King helped organize and led open housing marches in Chicago in 1966.

Vermont enacted its own laws prohibiting housing discrimination in 1987. Today, Vermont law protects against discrimination in housing on the basis of all categories listed in the Fair housing Act, as well as age, sexual orientation, gender identity, and receipt of public assistance.

In recognition of this historic anniversary, Governor Phil Scott has issued a proclamation celebrating Vermont’s role as a national leader in expanding housing protections and reaffirming Vermont’s commitment to ensuring that housing is accessible to all.

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Posted by: Leslie Black-Plumeau on March 29, 2018 - 4:53pm

Last week the Vermont House approved H. 922 which includes provisions from an earlier bill (H.766) that expands VHFA’s Down Payment Assistance Program. The bill is now passed over to the Senate and earlier this week was read and referred to the Senate Committee on Finance. Since the DPA program started in 2015, demand among qualified first-time home buyers has been twice what can be funded through the Vermont Affordable Housing Tax Credit, the program’s designated funding source. 

The roughly $5,000 in assistance the program provides to each borrower is especially critical for young  first-time home buyers who are making starting salaries and facing Vermont’s relatively high closing costs. The 600 home buyers the program has served so far have had an annual income of $65,000, purchased a home costing $160,000 and are 31 years old, on average. 

H. 922 also includes an expansion of the successful Downtown Development Tax Credit program and several other provisions, including a tax on e-cigarettes. VHFA’s Executive Director Sarah Carpenter testified in support of the bill before the House Ways and Means and Commerce Committees and hopes to provide testimony to the Senate Finance Committee in the near future.

Pictured: Rachel, an IT business analyst, is one of the 600 first-time Vermont home buyers who have used the Down Payment Assistance Program since it started in 2015. Photo by P. Detzer. 

 

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