Property Compliance News Briefs - July 2013

Monday, July 1, 2013

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a notice in the Federal Register regarding pet ownership for the elderly or persons with disabilities in multifamily rental housing and the accumulation of deposits for costs attributable to pets. The notice explained the proposed rule of allowing residents of such housing to own common household pets, subject to the residents’ paying a refundable pet deposit. Currently, regulations require that owners of HUD-assisted multifamily rental housing for the elderly or persons with disabilities collect the deposit and any increases in the deposit only through accumulation. This proposed rule only applies to policies for pets, not to service or assistance animals for persons with disabilities. Comments are due by Jul. 23. A copy of the notice is available at www.hudresourcecenter.com.

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The National Affordable Housing Management Association (NAHMA) announced in June the release of its annual NAHMA Affordable 100 list. The list comprises the 100 largest affordable multifamily property managers as ranked by affordable unit counts. To qualify properties must receive at least one federal subsidy, such as HOME funds or HUD project-based assistance. The list is available at www.nahma.org/affordable100.html.

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NAHMA honored five affordable rental housing properties at the fourth annual Affordable Housing Vanguard Awards. These awards are given to newly developed or significantly rehabilitated affordable multifamily communities that display quality design and financing. The Vanguard Award for new construction went to Gray’s Landing Apartments, Portland, Ore. for a large property, and the Woodlands at Zuck Park, Erie, Pa. for a small property. The award for major rehabilitation of an existing rental housing community was given to The Towers of Kuhio Park, Honolulu Hawaii. Union Crossing, Lawrence, Mass. received the award for major rehabilitation of a non-housing structure. The award for major rehabilitation of a historic structure into affordable rental housing went to Ghost Ranch Lodge, Tucson, Ariz.

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The Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA) completed the Ohio Housing Locator, a free property registry web site last month, and property managers and owners can now make updates to property information. OHFA has asked managers and owners who have a property listed are asked to make any necessary updates. Owners and managers are also asked to register properties that are not already listed on the locator. Searches for affordable rental housing can be done by ZIP code, city or county, cost and unit size through the locator. Searches can also be made using the property name or management company. The locator is found at www.ohiohousinglocator.org/default.aspx.

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Because of confusion surrounding repairs during inspection in recent online discussions and roundtables, the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA) released a statement regarding deficiencies repaired during physical inspections. In the statement, TDHCA said that repairs during the inspection may be permitted if time allows. However, all observed deficiencies are noted. The policy is that the repairing of a deficiency observed by an inspector is still counted as a deficiency in the scoring. It will be noted as repaired during inspection (RDI), but points will be deducted just as if the replacement was not done. The only difference between RDIs and other deficiencies is that RDI items do not require further proof or document of correction.

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TDHCA closed its online forum on Proposed Changes to the Compliance Rules on May 31. Stephanie Naquin, manager of compliance administration for the TDHCA, said that they are working towards taking the rules to the first July board meeting for publication for public comment.

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