|mutual housing||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Deborah Behrens (debbehAuto-trol.COM)|
|Date: Mon, 8 Aug 94 11:23 CDT|
> Debbie - Could you provide more information about Mutual Housing > Associations and the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation - addresses, > focus of work, region of work? -- Jeffrey Hobson N Street Cohousing For more information contact: NEIGHBORHOOD REINVESTMENT CORPORATION 80 Boylston St, #1230 Boston, MA 02116 (617) 565-8447 This is a handout I've gotten recently (it's about 4 pages long): MUTUAL HOUSING ASSOCIATIONS What is Mutual Housing? Mutual housing is an affordable alternative to traditional home ownership and a significant steup up from rental housing. Mutual Housing is a permanent housing resource that offers residents security of tenure, long-term affordability, a voice in the operation of their housing, and an opportunity to be a part of a stable community. Mutual Housing is quality housing, built and maintained to standards that insure long-term, multigenerational use. What is a Mutual Housing Association? A Mutual Housing Association is a private, nonprofit, 501(c)(3) partnership organization that develops, owns and manages new and existing affordable housing in the community interest. Membership is composed of Mutual Housing residents and potential residents, representatives of municipal and state government, and leaders from businesses, corporations and the broader community. The Association is governed by a Board of Directors representative of the membership. Each Board member has one vote; Mutual Housing residents and potential residents constitute the majority. The mission of a Mutual Housing Association is to provide safe, permanently affordable housing, and security from displacement for low- and moderate-income residents. Beyond developing housing, the Association's mission is to build a strong and stable community through the empowerment of its residents. Mutual Housing Associations are committed to being ongoing producers of affordable housing to meet the current and future housing needs of the communities they serve. Who Owns Mutual Housing? The Mutual Housing Association as a corporate entity (rather than members as individuals) owns all of the housing units and complexes. While residents do not own their units, they do have pride of ownership because Mutual Housing provides members with a lifetime right to occupy their units (as long as they do not violate the Occupancy Agreement) and the right to nominate a family or household member as a successor. Through participation on local Resident Councils and through elected representatives to the Board of Directors, residents have a majority voice in all decisions and actions of the Mutual Housing Association; in effect, residents "own" the organization that owns their housing, thereby furthering the residents' ownership stake. How is Mutual Housing Managed and Operated? Residents pay an affordable monthly housing charge which in aggregate covers operating costs, including realestate taxes, property insurance, maintenance, repairs, and long-term replacement reserves. In most cases, residents pay a percentage of adjusted gross income for housing charges. A small percentage of housing charges is set aside in a fund for ongoing production. As the Association grows, the Future Development Fund provides an internal source of development capital. The properties are managed by a professional management staff with regular input and direction from residents through organized Resident Councils and through the Mutual Housing Association Property Management Committee. Resident orientation, training and ongoing support ensure meaningful participation in operation and property management decisions. How is Mutual Housing Developed? Mutual Housing is developed by the Mutual Housing Association, whose staff includes development professionals. In addition, members of the Board of Directors who contribute their expertise further enhance the Association's development capacity. Mutual Housing is developed for diverse populations with significant input from potential residents and the community at large. Mutual Housing may be developed from existing structures through rehap or may be new construction. It is built for long-term multigenerational use. The Mutual Housing Association is committed to using all resources in excess of its operating and maintenance costs for the continued production of additional housing units. How is Mutual Housing Capitalized? Mutual Housing is capitalized with financial mechanisms that will not jeopardize permanent affordability or the Association's long-term ownership of the housing. The most desirable method of capitalizing Mutual Housing Association developments is with upfront grants from public and private sources. Ideally, Mutual Housing is debt free. Using upfront grants, the Association is able to develop housing that mitigates or eliminates the impact of debt service. This results in increased affordability -- and the larger the grant, the lower the income group that can be served. By eliminating the need for equity capital from outside investors, the Association's housing is not subject to market pressures and hence, affordability is preserved. Residents pay a one-time membership fee, which is applied to the capitalization needs of the development. The fee is set by the Association and can range from several hundred dollars to several thousand dollars. The fee earns nominal interest and is refundable when the resident moves. The Association also uses its Future Development Fund to capitalize developments. Debt financing and other financial mechanisms are used only to the extent necessary to cover the gap between available grants and development costs. What are the Benefits of Mutual Housing to the Community and the Residents? "A step up from rental housing," Mutual Housing offers many of the advantages of traditional home ownership. - Quality housing -- the units are well constructed and well maintained. - Good management -- since professional property management staff work primarily for its members, management is sensitive and responsive to residents' concerns. - Security of tenure -- Membership in the Mutual Housing Association assures residents that they will have an affordable home for as long as they wish to stay, provided they do not commit any serious breach of the Mutual Housing Occupancy Agreement. - Continued affordability -- Because the housing is not to be sold, it is not affected by market pressures. Housing costs are contained and directly related to the costs of operating the housing. In most cases, residents pay a percentage of adjusted gross income for housing charges, ensuring that the housing is affordable over a resident's lifetime. - Resident control -- Each member has a voice in the affairs of the Mutual Housing Association, including policy decisions regarding property management and plans for future development activities. The Role of Neighborhood Reinvestment: The Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation is a national nonprofit organization that provides technical assistance and support to the national NeighborWorks network of local partnership organizations actively serving 260 neighborhoods in 140 communities across the country. At the request of Congress, Neighborhood Reinvestment undertook pilot development of Mutual Housing Associations in Baltimore, Maryland, and the Lower East Side of New York City. Mutual Housing Associations now also exist in Hartford and Stamford, Connecticut; Sacramento, California; Austin, Texas; Ithaca, New York; Madison Wisconsin; and Denver, Colorado. Neighborhood Reinvestment provides direction and assistance in all phases of Mutual Housing Development. When organizational formation is complete, sites are secured and a local Mutual Housing Association Board of Directors has been established, Neighborhood Reinvestment provides ongoing training, support and technical assistance to the Association's staff, Board and Resident Councils. Mutual Housing Associations have access to a broad range of services and resources available to the national NeighborWorks network.
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