Category Archives: Press Releases

Counseling Grant Supports Improvement of Housing Situations

BISMARCK, ND – North Dakota Housing Finance Agency secured a $59,318 U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development housing counseling grant this summer.

“The grant dollars support programs that help individuals and families make informed housing decisions,” said Jolene Kline, NDHFA executive director.

The funds were primarily split between two affiliate organizations – Community Action Opportunities of Minot and South Eastern North Dakota Community Action Agency of Fargo. Each received $29,107. The Community Action Partnership (Dickinson and Williston areas) program received $1,102.

The recipients of the grant offer financial literacy training, provide assistance to renters and homeless persons, and assist households of modest means in becoming and remaining homeowners.

HUD’s housing counseling grants are awarded annually through a competitive process. The organizations that apply must be preapproved by the federal agency and are subject to biennial performance reviews to maintain the approved status.

National and regional organizations including state housing finance agencies like NDHFA are typically responsible for the distribution of the grant funding to the community-based organizations that provide guidance to low- and moderate-income households seeking to improve their housing situation. The larger entities also help improve the quality of the counseling services and enhance coordination among the providers.

NDHFA is a self-supporting state agency dedicated to making housing affordable for all North Dakotans. The Industrial Commission of North Dakota, consisting of Governor Doug Burgum as chairman, Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, oversees the agency. More information about NDHFA is available online at www.ndhfa.org or by calling (800) 292-8621.

Housing Finance Agency Awards Development Assistance

EdwintonPlaceBismarck

Rendering of Edwinton Place in Bismarck.

BISMARCK, N.D. – North Dakota’s most vulnerable households will benefit from affordable housing development assistance project awards made by North Dakota Housing Finance Agency (NDHFA).

Seven developers received funding commitments from NDHFA in November. The awards were made through three federal programs – $3.16 million in tax credit authority through the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program, $2.72 million from the National Housing Trust Fund (HTF) and $460,000 from the Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) – and $2.65 million from the state’s Housing Incentive Fund (HIF).

“The projects that North Dakota Housing Finance Agency selected support the state’s efforts to address behavioral health and criminal justice issues while ensuring North Dakota’s aging and disabled households and lower-wage workers have safe and affordable housing as well,” said Jolene Kline, NDHFA executive director. “By ensuring that our most vulnerable state residents have a safe and affordable place to call home, we reduce the overall burden placed on the communities and our state.”

About the Projects

Edwinton Place in Bismarck, a “Housing First” project spearheaded by Burleigh County Housing Authority, was awarded $813,000 in LIHTCs. NDHFA also made commitments of $1,026,147 from the HTF, $500,000 from HIF and $460,000 from NSP. It will provide permanent supportive housing for 40 individuals coming directly out of homelessness.

EdgeArtistFlats

A rendering of the Edge Artist Flats in Fargo.

The Edge Artist Flats in Fargo, a Commonwealth Development Corp. project, received $740,000 in LIHTCs and $1,369,263 from the HTF. The 42-unit, family-friendly development will provide supportive services to its disabled tenants and to households at risk of homelessness.

HomeField 2 Apartments in Fargo is the second phase of a Beyond Shelter Inc. (BSI) development. NDHFA awarded $504,437 in LIHTCs to support the development of 39 senior apartments including eight accessible units.

Ellendale Apartments, an Affordable Housing Developers Inc. acquisition and rehab project, was awarded $755,000 from HIF to support the redevelopment of a 32-unit property including accessibility improvements that improve the livability of the property for the tenants with disabilities.

Pure Downtown in Grand Forks, a project of Dakota Commercial, received $1.1 million conditional commitment through HIF to reserve 25 of its 50 apartments for low- to moderate-income households.

Dakota Heights in West Fargo, a Southhill Properties LLC project, received $425,100 in LIHTCs. The senior housing project will have a vacancy preference for elderly veterans with Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing vouchers. Six of the 30 units will be reserved as permanent supportive housing for individuals with physical and intellectual disabilities.

Grace Garden in West Fargo, a joint venture of the YWCA of Cass Clay and BSI, received $672,500 in LIHTCs. NDHFA also made a commitment of $325,549 from the HTF and $500,000 from HIF. The supportive housing project will serve 30 households at risk of homelessness, many of whom are transitioning from domestic violence.

About the Programs

“North Dakota Housing Finance Agency received 27 total applications for assistance from 14 projects during our fall 2017 funding rounds. The greatest demand was for support from the LIHTC and the HTF programs, more than twice what the programs could provide,” said Kline.

LIHTC provides an indirect federal subsidy used to finance the construction or rehabilitation of rental housing for lower-income households. The purpose of the HTF is to increase and preserve the supply of housing for extremely low-income households including homeless families. NSP supports the acquisition of foreclosed, abandoned or vacant properties in targeted areas for redevelopment into affordable rental housing. And HIF, the only state-funded program, strengthens communities by supporting the development or preservation of rental housing for essential service workers and low- to moderate-income households.

All of NDHFA’s development programs have allocation plans that are reviewed annually to ensure that the projects that receive financial awards are addressing the state’s greatest housing needs. The application process for each program is competitive with the top scoring projects receiving the awards. Each applicant must provide evidence that there is a need for the type of housing proposed, that the community supports the development, and that construction costs are reasonable. The period of affordability for the projects supported with federal funds is 30 years, HIF’s is 20 years.

About NDHFA

A public financial institution dedicated to making housing affordable for all North Dakotans, NDHFA is overseen by the North Dakota Industrial Commission which consists of Governor Doug Burgum, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem and Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring. More information about the programs administered by NDHFA and the projects awarded development assistance is available online at www.ndhfa.org.

Hazen Marks Successful Redevelopment of Main Street Property

HAZEN, ND – A gathering in Hazen today marked the successful redevelopment of a blighted Main Street property into an 18-unit apartment complex.

Ribbon

Project partners celebrate the development of Hazen Pioneer Apartments. Additional photos are available on NDHFA’s Facebook page.

“Through the development of Hazen Pioneer Apartments, we are addressing three community goals – improvement of our Main Street, retention of our senior population and more housing options for the workforce,” said Buster Langowski, Hazen Community Development executive director.

HCD oversaw development and got the project moving forward by purchasing the site’s original building, a community hospital that later served as a nursing home, for $40,000. The City of Hazen supported the effort by providing land, a former city park that surrounds the site, a $60,000 value. The Hazen Housing Authority is the property owner.

“Hazen Pioneer Apartments is an excellent example of how a community can better link housing and supportive services allowing elderly community members to affordably and comfortably age in place,” said Jolene Kline, North Dakota Housing Finance Agency executive director. “The result is better quality of life for our seniors and significant healthcare savings for the community and state.”

The project received $2.1 million from the Housing Incentive Fund, a state program that supports the development of housing for essential service workers, main street employees and fixed-income households. NDHFA administers HIF accepting contributions from state taxpayers to capitalize the fund. The agency received 22 contributions that directly supported the project including large contributions by WRT Communications and U.S. Bank.

The Lewis & Clark Development Group provided a $50,000 pre-development loan and the North Dakota Department of Health provided a $17,000 Brownfield Grant for site cleanup. The remaining project financing was provided by Union State Bank and The Union Bank of Hazen. Other partners include Multifamily Capital Resources Inc., a development consultant; Williams Building Company Inc., the construction manager; JLG Architects; Retterath Management and Sales, property management and HJL Management Company, the eligibility agent.

Tour

Community members tour Hazen Pioneer Apartments.

The supportive services for seniors at Hazen Pioneer Apartments include meals, transportation, medical checks, and the local grocery store will make deliveries to tenants. Four of the units are fully accessible. The property is within walking distance of the public library, city hall and downtown businesses. Energy efficient appliances, in-unit laundry and window coverings are provided. Internet access, cable TV and off street parking are available. Individuals interested in learning more should contact Sandy Retterath at Retterath Management and Sales, (701) 748-5577.

HCD is charged with furthering the development of the City of Hazen and the surrounding area by promoting, encouraging and assisting in the development of new enterprises or the expansion or continuation of presently existing businesses.

NDHFA is a self-supporting state agency that finances the creation and rehabilitation of affordable housing across North Dakota. The North Dakota Industrial Commission, consisting of Governor Doug Burgum, as chairman, Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, oversees the agency.

Property Redevelopment Assistance Available in Targeted Areas

BISMARCK, ND – North Dakota Housing Finance Agency is accepting applications for $460,000 through the Neighborhood Stabilization Program 3. The federal program supports the acquisition of foreclosed, abandoned or vacant properties in targeted areas for redevelopment into affordable rental housing.

“Preference will be given to applications that create housing for extremely low-income households,” said Jolene Kline, NDHFA executive director.

NDHFA recently updated its NSP3 Action Plan to be more reflective of the state’s needs. The new target areas are in the communities of Bismarck, Dickinson, Fargo, Minot, West Fargo and Williston. To be eligible for the available funds, a property must be located within a census tract with a needs score of seven or greater. A mapping tool on the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s website, www.huduser.org/NSP/NSP3.html, is used to determine a property’s score.

Applications must be received by 5 p.m. (CDT) on Oct. 27, 2017. More information is available online, http://www.ndhfa.org, or by contacting NDHFA’s planning and housing development division at (800) 292-8621 or hfainfo@nd.gov.

NDHFA is a self-supporting state agency that finances the creation and rehabilitation of affordable housing across North Dakota. The Industrial Commission of North Dakota, consisting of Governor Doug Burgum, as chairman, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem and Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring, oversees the agency.

Construction Begins on Permanent Housing for Chronically Homeless Individuals

GRAND FORKS, ND – Grand Forks Homes Inc. broke ground today on LaGrave on First, a project that will provide affordable housing and supportive services for individuals who have experienced chronic homelessness in the community.

Partners

LaGrave on First development partners, Grand Forks Housing Authority and Beyond Shelter, Inc. More images from the event are posted on NDHFA’s Facebook page.

“To end homelessness, the first step is to provide permanent housing,” said Terry Hanson, Grand Forks Housing Authority executive director. LaGrave will employ an approach called ‘Housing First’ that prioritizes the provision of housing, then provides services for residents to address their individual issues.

The project has strong support from the City of Grand Forks, which first identified the community’s need for Permanent Supportive Housing in its 2008 plan to end long-term homelessness. The city donated the land on which LaGrave will be built, and committed $335,000 in HOME program funds to the development.

LaGrave also has the backing of North Dakota Housing Finance Agency. The state agency provided most of the $8.7 million project’s financing by allocating federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits that brought almost $7 million in equity to the project. NDHFA also awarded $772,514 to LaGrave from the National Housing Trust Fund.

Kline
GFHA received $7.7 million from NDHFA to support the development of LaGrave. NDHFA Executive Director Jolene Kline addresses the ground breaking attendees.

“Our mission is to ensure that all North Dakotans have safe and affordable housing,” said Jolene Kline, NDHFA executive director. Kline also serves as the chair of the state’s Interagency Council on Homelessness.

Beyond Shelter Inc., a nonprofit developer based in Fargo, ND, is the housing authority’s development partner in the project. “We are pleased to be able to work with the Grand Forks Housing Authority, offering our expertise to address this housing shortfall in the Grand Forks community,” said BSI CEO Dan Madler. LaGrave is BSI’s sixth PSH project.

Additional financial assistance is provided by the Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines, $500,000 from its Affordable Housing Program; a $150,000 grant from the Otto Bremer Trust; and the Turtle Mountain Housing Authority contributed $10,000 in exchange for a preference for its tribal members for five of the housing units.

The four-story building will be constructed in downtown Grand Forks on a site that was a city skate park adjacent to the police department. It will have 42 one-bedroom/one-bath apartments with services provided on-site and 24/7 staffing. Nine of the units will be fully accessible. GFHA will manage the property.

NSP3 Program Expansion Proposed to Statewide

BISMARCK, ND – North Dakota Housing Finance Agency is proposing to amend its Neighborhood Stabilization Program 3 abbreviated plan to extend eligible areas to statewide. The program supports the purchase of foreclosed, abandoned or vacant property for redevelopment into affordable housing.

A draft of the amended NSP3 plan is available online, www.ndhfa.org. Written comments can be submitted to Planning and Housing Development Division Director Jennifer Henderson at hfainfo@nd.gov or NDHFA, PO Box 1535, Bismarck, ND, 58502-1535. Comments must be received by the close of business on Sept. 21, 2017.

NSP is a federal program established by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008. Additional assistance was authorized under Section 1497 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 and is referred to as NSP3.

NDHFA is a self-supporting state agency that finances the creation and rehabilitation of affordable housing across North Dakota. The North Dakota Industrial Commission, consisting of Governor Doug Burgum as chairman, Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, oversees the agency.

Nonprofit Celebrates 1,000th Affordable Housing Unit

FARGO, ND – A grand opening at HomeField Apartments, a new senior complex in south Fargo, provided an opportunity on Tuesday to not only celebrate the successful completion of a project, it was also an opportunity to reflect on the accomplishments of Beyond Shelter Inc., a nonprofit developer that has taken on some of North Dakota’s greatest housing challenges.

ChamberRibbonPresentation

FMWF Chamber congratulates Beyond Shelter on the successful completion of HomeField Apartments.

The Fargo Housing and Redevelopment Authority started BSI in 1999, providing it with a $5,000 operating loan and the support of its staff.  Since that time, BSI has grown into a fully independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a staff of eight. With the opening of HomeField Apartments and a ground breaking on the LaGrave on First project in Grand Forks in September, BSI will have surpassed a milestone 1,000 units of affordable housing developed.

While BSI strives to address the housing needs of all lower income individuals and families, the nonprofit has developed several noteworthy projects across the state. Included are six permanent supportive housing projects for those who have experienced long-term homelessness, and nine projects targeted to lower-wage workers and law enforcement personnel in energy-impacted communities during the height of the energy boom in Western North Dakota.

“Beyond Shelter Inc. was created to dig deeper and develop housing targeted to the lowest income households, the people whose needs are overlooked,” Bev Rohde, a former FHRA board member and a still-serving original BSI board member said of the nonprofit’s formation. “We are excited to celebrate this 1,000 plus unit milestone, but there is more work to do in Fargo and around the state as affordable housing continues to be out of reach for many individuals and families.”

In recent years, BSI has focused its attention on North Dakota’s fastest growing population, elderly households with limited resources. HomeField is the fourth senior project the organization has developed in Fargo in four years. The total cost of developing the 39-unit property was $6.87 million. If funding can be secured, two more buildings will be added at the site over the next two years.

“I am thankful every day that organizations like Beyond Shelter exist, ensuring the most vulnerable members of our communities have a safe place to call home,” said Jolene Kline, North Dakota Housing Finance Agency executive director. The state agency finances many of BSI’s North Dakota projects. It awarded $589,153 in federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits to HomeField, which through syndication by Wells Fargo Affordable Housing CDC, brought $6.18 million in equity to the project.

DSC_0003

More images of HomeField and the celebratory event are available on NDHFA’s Facebook page.

The City of Fargo committed $165,000 in HOME funds and $150,000 in CDBG funding to help buy down the cost of the land on which the property is located. “The City has identified affordable senior housing as a critical need, especially housing for extremely low-income seniors,” said Dan Madler, BSI’s CEO.

HomeField is located at 4245 28th Ave S, next to Anderson Park in South Fargo. All the units are reserved for income-qualified households age 55 and older. There are 33 one-bedroom and six two-bedroom apartments. Depending on household size and income, the units rent for $388 to $696 per month plus utilities. An individual earning $16,530 or less would qualify to rent a one-bedroom apartment for $370.

MetroPlains Management expects the property to be completely leased up by the end of August. Individuals who would like to learn more about affordable housing available in the Fargo area can call the property manager at (701) 232-1887. Information is also available online at www.metroplains.com.