Spotlight On webinars:
Feb. 26, 2–3:30 pm EST
Where do the differences lie between the LIHTC program and HUD programs when it comes to management functions? Join Jo Ikelheimer as she highlights the key disconnections between the two programs.
$95 (online) • More info
Demystifying Monthly Financial Statements
March 26, 2–3:30 pm EST
Knowing how to quickly drill down and understand the meaning of the numbers in a monthly property-level financial statement is critical to good decision-making. This webinar will help you zero in on the numbers that matter.
$95 (online) • More info
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HUD Announces Final Rule on Discriminatory Effects in Housing
By Mark S. Alper, RHM, VP Compliance
On Feb. 8, 2013, HUD announced its Final Rule on the implementation of the Fair Housing Act’s Discriminatory Effects Standard. The 83-page notice will become effective 30 days after its publication in the Federal Register, and has broad impact given the Fair Housing Act’s scope which includes not just HUD-assisted housing, but almost all housing in the United States—market rate, Section 42 Low Income Housing Tax Credit, mortgage financing/lending, condominiums, etc.
Special live webinar on final rule, Feb. 27 – learn more
The notice, which includes terms of legal art such as “disparate impact,” explains how HUD will make determinations in making cause findings of discrimination in violation of the Fair Housing Act. One of the more interesting aspects of the notice is its statement that housing providers may engage in practices that are “facially neutral,” and still be found to have engaged in discrimination. In layman’s terms, a housing provider can have a policy, practice or procedure that is not designed to discriminate, applies to everyone and has no intent of discrimination, and still be charged with violation of the Fair Housing Act.
Read the full text of this article online
By Jo Ikelheimer, MPA, RHM
I joined a sizable group of industry professionals last month at the National Council of State Housing Agencies’ annual HFA Institute workshops for the LIHTC program. To kick things off, we received a program overview by industry officials representing states, syndicators, tax accountants, and housing policy organizations who were all pleased with the recent passage of H.R. 8 that gave the tax credit program a couple of small victories. (These were discussed in last month’s HMU article.) The buzz words from this session included deficit reduction and tax reform, which are of course hot topics among legislators in DC these days and have significant potential for impacting the housing credit program.
There were mixed reviews, however, as to if and when these initiatives will be implemented. In addition, increases in recapitalization of post year-15 projects, in shortages of soft funds for LIHTC financing, and in the number of high-cost projects were also discussed in detail by the panelists. On a final note, they issued a cautionary message for those in attendance to beware of the risk of negative press coverage for LIHTC similar to that which led to a considerable decrease in HOME funding, as well as the the continued risk to the program from tax reform. Industry participants were urged not to become complacent and lose their passion for spreading the message of the program’s successes.
So that was the macro perspective. Breakout sessions delved into the ‘micro’ issues of properly managing and maintaining compliance at LIHTC properties. One of the most illuminating session dealth with EIV and LIHTC.
EIV for LIHTC has been a hot topic since the mandatory implementation of HUD’s Enterprise Income Verification (EIV) System on January 30, 2010 and the subsequent disallowance for LIHTC owners of using the EIV data for verifications at properties that have blended HUD and LIHTC funding. According to HUD representative Benjamin Metcalf, who spoke on one of the compliance panels at the event, HUD is exploring an option for requiring tenants to sign a consent form allowing disclosure of the EIV data to state agencies as a condition of tenancy, which means that it could be used on the Tenant Income Certification (TIC) forms for purposes of recertification.
Read the full text of this article online