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Sunday, December 5, 2021

City Of Seattle Makes Investments Towards Minority Homeownership

For the second year in a row, Mayor Jenny A. Durkan and the Office of Housing are announcing multiple mid-year investments to support affordable housing. So far this year, the Office of Housing has invested $19.5 million to support the production of 204 new rent- and income-restricted homes in Mount Baker and 51 new permanently affordable homeownership opportunities in neighborhoods throughout the city, in addition to this week’s announcement for $50 million for rapid acquisition. These City investments are expected to leverage additional commitments of public financing, including tax credits, bonds, and state and federal grants.  

“Earlier this week, we announced opportunities to rapidly create housing for individuals experiencing homelessness. With today’s announcement more than 200 households will have an affordable housing option and an additional 51 will have the opportunity to purchase their first home in resource-rich neighborhoods throughout the City,” said Mayor Durkan. “In the coming days, as I announce my budget, we will continue to make historic investments that provide the flexibility to capitalize on housing opportunities that prevent displacement, create generational wealth, and allow our communities to thrive.” 

The 204 new rental homes, which will be built as part of a mixed-income town center development near the future Judkins Park light rail station, will serve households earning at or below 60 percent area median income, or $48,600 for an individual and $55,550 for a household of two. New homeownership opportunities in a range of housing types will serve homebuyers earning at or below 80 percent area median income, or $92,560 for a household of four. 

Since 2017, the City of Seattle has invested more than $1.7 billion in affordable housing investments to build, and preserve 6,200 homes by 2023. Historically, the Office of Housing has published one Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) in the fall but given the extraordinary need and availability of federal funding over the past two years, the Office of Housing has published multiple NOFAs to support more rapid affordable housing production, preservation, and acquisition. The $50 million investment announced earlier this week will be used to acquire three new buildings, near completion, with 165 permanent homes for youth and adults experiencing homelessness.  

“Over the course of this pandemic, the Office of Housing has stewarded an unprecedented number of funding opportunities to support affordable housing production, preservation, and acquisition throughout our city,” said Emily Alvarado, Director of the Seattle Office of Housing. “There’s still much more to do, and we need the continued partnership of our affordable housing providers, other public funders, and community leaders to help us achieve our housing and racial justice goals.” 

In addition to the annual Fall Notices of Funding Availability (NOFA) for affordable rental and homeownership development, this fall the Office of Housing will make available $5.4 million in funding to support homeownership among minority  communities, through the implementation of two Equitable Communities Initiative Task Force recommendations. The first portion of funding will be made available through a Request For Proposals (RFP) to be released by the end of the month. The intent of this RFP is to help stabilize communities at risk of displacement by helping minority homeowners retain ownership of their homes. The second portion of funding will be made available by the end of the year and will support the development of new permanently affordable for-sale homes, with a focus on creating equitable access to homeownership opportunities for communities of color. 

Affordable Homeownership Investments 

Total City Investments: $5,190,000 

Total New Affordable Homes: 51 

Building Name  Sponsor Description Incomes Served Homes Neighborhood 
PAHO  Homestead Community Land Trust, Edge Developers Affordable homes within 30-unit mixed-income condominium  80% AMI 19 Phinney Ridge 
Corvidae Co-op  Frolic, Habitat for Humanity Seattle/King County Affordable homes within 10-unit mixed-income co-operative 80% AMI Columbia City 
14th Ave on Capitol Hill  Habitat for Humanity Seattle/King County, Green Canopy Stacked flat condominium building (100 percent affordable) 80% AMI 17 Capitol Hill 
15th in Highland Park  Habitat for Humanity Seattle/King County Cottage-style homes (100 percent affordable) 80% AMI 12 Highland Park 
Puget Ridge Co-Housing 
Homestead Community Land Trust 
Transition an existing home in 23-unit  cohousing community to permanent affordability 80% AMI West Seattle 

Affordable Rental Housing Investments 

Total City Investments: $14,387,806 

Total New Affordable Homes: 204 

Building Name  Sponsor Description Incomes Served Homes Neighborhood 
Grand Street Commons  Mount Baker Housing Association Affordable rental housing in mixed-income town center development 50% AMI, 60% AMI 204 Mount Baker 

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