HDAdvisors prepared a report on a Housing Trust Fund for the City of Richmond, presenting it to City Council and Mayor Dwight Jones. The Richmond City Council Affordable Housing Trust Fund Advisory Board was established in July of 2012 to submit a report containing the Board’s advice and recommendations concerning appropriateness of such regulations and procedures for using the Richmond Affordable Housing Trust Fund. A Housing Trust Fund (HTF) is used to expand access to affordable housing within a community, and it will serve a comprehensive range of households from persons facing homelessness to persons with disabilities, young families seeking to buy their first home, veterans, and seniors needing critical home repairs or accessibility improvements to remain housed in their neighborhoods – to name just a few.
All of the households assisted through the HTF must have incomes at or below 80% of area median income (AMI), and it will support projects such as preservation, rehabilitation, and new contruction of affordable rental housing; construction, acquisition, and rehabilitation of single family homes; downpayment and closing cost assistance; homeownership and foreclosure counseling, and temporary rental assistance. In the report, HDAdvisors outlines the need for a Housing Trust Fund in Richmond, highlighting rental needs, vacant property, homeownership, concentrated poverty, and declining federal funds for housing.
The Housing Trust Fund has many economic benefits, both short and long term. Housing development creates jobs and contributes to the local economy. For example, every 100 homes constructed creates 357 jobs, has an immediate impact of $614,520, and results in $1,086,180 annual increase in tax revenues.
The Board recommends that the Richmond Housing Trust Fund be launched with $5,000,000 from City General Funds, and target the Fund to serve citizens with incomes at or below 80% AMI, reserving 30% of the Fund for extremely low income households.
To view the booklet presented to City Council Members, click here: