1. Preserving Low-Income Housing in Detroit

    January 13, 2017

    Detroit neighborhood

    U-M researchers have teamed up with a Detroit Low-Income Housing Tax Credit task force to explore the financing and ownership to preserve decent affordable housing after 15 years of operation (when many investors sell their ownership).

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    The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program is the nation’s largest source of financing for building or rehabilitating affordable housing. The sale of the credits provides equity to help finance the production of decent affordable housing for low-income renters who are in or near poverty, many of whom are elderly or disabled or have experienced chronic homelessness. But once projects reach 15 years of operation, investors sell their ownership, often leaving affordable housing projects in need of new sources of capital to provide much needed maintenance. In Detroit, more than 5,300 units will reach 15 years between now and 2020, so finding solutions to restructuring financing and management is an urgent need.

    For more than a year, U-M researchers have teamed with a Detroit LIHTC task force to analyze the financing and ownership to preserve decent affordable housing after this critical timeframe. Through this partnership, researchers will determine strategies that can help address the looming crisis. Analysis of solutions is integrated into all parts of the research, and the work will produce recommendations with partners who can implement these through their roles in the affordable housing industry.

    Margaret Dewar, U-M Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning
    Lan Deng, U-M Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning
    Sarida Scott, Community Development Advocates of Detroit
    LaToya Morgan, Community Development Advocates of Detroit
    Julie Schneider, Detroit Department of Housing and Revitalization
    Tahirih Ziegler, Detroit Local Initiatives Support Corporation
    Dennis Quinn, Cinnaire
    Yulonda Byrd, Cinnaire
    Victor Alba, Detroit Local Initiatives Support Corporation
    Tim Thorland, Southwest Housing Solutions
    Kirby Burkholder, IFF