Loudoun Supervisors Consider New Affordable Rentals Loan Program

County supervisors are considering a new, more streamlined loan program to help affordable housing developers move quickly to buy rental complexes.

The proposed Rental Housing Acquisition and Preservation Loan Program would be funded with $5 million of Fiscal Year 2021 year-end fund balance. Supervisors already voted on Sept. 8 to use that $5 million toward the county’s affordable housing needs.

The new program would work alongside the existing Affordable Multifamily Housing Loan program. Compared to that program, the new program would have a shorter review period—meant to help affordable housing developers snatch up properties rather than watch them disappear from the market while the wheels of government turn—and some more flexible qualifications. The program would have an estimated two-month approval process compared to an estimated five-month approval process.

Developers would apply to the county to be pre-qualified, creating a pool of certified developers and skipping that part of application review when they apply for a loan. Applications would also be accepted on a rolling, rather than annual, basis. That program has several times seen applications outside of its normal annual cycle as properties have come available; according to county staff, the new program would replace that.

The loans would also be only toward buying properties, where the existing program can fund new construction and rehabilitating existing properties. Developers would submit to the county a plan outlining how both new and existing tenants would be served.

The Board of Supervisors’ finance committee on Jan. 11 voted to send the proposal to a public hearing 4-0-1, with County Chair Phyllis J. Randall (D-At Large) absent.

3 thoughts on “Loudoun Supervisors Consider New Affordable Rentals Loan Program

  • 2022-01-14 at 4:41 pm

    I’d like to see this program have clear guidelines for how much rent a developer can charge for dwelling units. If these guidelines already exist, please let the public know. The concern is that a developer’s idea of “affordable” might not be realistic. I’m not looking a gift horse in the mouth. I appreciate the program & think it’s wonderful. But safeguards should be in place to make sure these units truly are affordable for the long haul. Happy MLK Day Loudoun!

  • 2022-01-14 at 7:58 pm

    So rather than give the money to Loudoun residents who would have to qualify for rent assistance they going to give it to their developer friends. Well there’s a shocker.

  • 2022-01-14 at 11:16 pm

    Perhaps the BoS should focus on getting people into equity building homes instead of rentals. I used to manage apartments and duplexes back in the day and it was a challenge keeping them in comparable condition to homes in nearby neighborhoods. The renters were great people, generally older college students and there were no issues with payment, it just got down to the fact they didn’t own the property (“no skin in the game” as it were) so the care factor wasn’t high on their priority list. I worked my entire life in order to live in Loudoun County. I’ve lived in stairwell apartments, duplexes, and small houses but I finally made it Loudoun County. I am concerned about overcrowding and if developers get too much leeway, Loudoun County will lose its appeal and charm, and candidly, property values will start to decline. The BoS needs to think deeply when it comes to development and ensure Loudoun County continues to be a nice, quiet place where people want to live.

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