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December 18, 2020

News
RIHousing Launches New Investor Transparency Initiative and January Bond Sale

RIHousing Launches New Investor Transparency Initiative and January Bond Sale

New Investor Website www.RIHousingBonds.com will be used to Attract More Municipal Bond Investors

Providence, RI – December 18, 2020

Rhode Island Housing and Mortgage Finance Corporation (RIHousing) today announced a new investor outreach initiative aimed at attracting more investors to their municipal bond offerings. In advance of its upcoming bond sale, RIHousing launched a new, open-access Investor Relations (IR) site, which provides a single location for investors to access the data and documents that outline the credit features of the agency’s financing programs. 

The new IR website is free to all investors at www.RIHousingBonds.com. It is being powered by BondLink, a financial technology company that has set the standard for investor transparency across the $4 trillion municipal bond market.

RIHousing is currently planning its next Multi-family issuance, which is expected to come to market in January 2021. Information regarding the sale will be accessible on the agency’s new site.

“We are committed to providing investors with easy access to our financial data,” said Kara Lachapelle, Chief Financial Officer at RIHousing. “How data is provided is a key part of being transparent: using an investor website allows us to reach more investors, and to provide financial updates in a much more user-friendly format, whether investors are using a Bloomberg terminal or a mobile phone.”

“Given how difficult market conditions have become, and how credit sensitive investors are now relative to six months ago, we’re excited to work with RIHousing to reach more investors and raise investor demand for its bond programs,” said Colin MacNaught, co-founder and CEO of BondLink. “Sophisticated issuers like RIHousing understand a commitment to transparency includes providing a better digital experience for investors online, and we look forward to partnering with them.”

Academic research shows that better, more accessible disclosure can lead to lower bond yields for municipal issuers and lower trading costs for investors. Enhanced issuer transparency has also been a continued point of emphasis from market regulators.

September 16, 2020

News
RIHousing Issues Inaugural Social Bonds to Support Affordable Housing

RIHousing Issues Inaugural Social Bonds to Support Affordable Housing

Proceeds will open doors to homeownership for low-to-moderate income RIers

Providence, RI – RIHousing announced the issuance of $142 million of new bonds, the first ‘Social Bonds’ to be offered by the agency. Social Bonds are bonds that raise funds for new and existing projects that address or mitigate a specific social issue and/or seek to achieve positive social outcomes.  The sale of the bonds will finance affordable home loans and down payment assistance to low-to-moderate income first-time homebuyers in Rhode Island.

“Building upon the growing interest in socially responsible investments, these bonds will enable RIHousing to open the doors to homeownership to more low-and-moderate income first-time homebuyers,” said Kara Lachapelle, RIHousing’s Chief Financial Officer. “Offering these bonds as ‘Social Bonds’ allows investors to invest directly in bonds that achieve positive social outcomes.”

For almost 50 years, RIHousing has worked to ensure that all Rhode Island residents have access to safe and healthy homes in livable and sustainable communities. The agency finances affordable housing through a variety of channels, including its longstanding Homeownership Opportunity Program (“HOP”), where RIHousing issues bonds to finance mortgage loans to first time homebuyers of low-to-moderate income and provides down payment assistance.

“We recognize that homeownership is a meaningful way for families to build wealth and equity, and we are committed to helping more Rhode Islanders invest in their future and achieve the dream of homeownership,” said Carol Ventura, Executive Director of RIHousing. “The proceeds from the sale of Social Bonds will allow us to continue fulfilling our core mission of helping our state and its residents.”

Social Bonds support projects with clear social benefits aimed at addressing or mitigating a specific social issue and/or seeking to achieve positive social outcomes. RIHousing’s Social Bonds designation reflects the use of proceeds of the bonds in a manner that is consistent with the “Social Bond Principles” as promulgated by the International Capital Markets Association (“ICMA”) and mapped to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.  The designation reflects the use of the proceeds to meet the goals of reducing poverty and inequalities, expanding access to financial services and supporting sustainable cities and communities in the state. Mortgage loans funded by the bond proceeds will be originated by the agency’s network of Participating Lenders and the RIHousing Loan Center.

“RIHousing has a deep commitment to social responsibility,” said Ventura. “Social Bonds are an important opportunity for investors seeking to make socially impactful investments and critical for attracting funding to benefit some of the most vulnerable Rhode Islanders.”

About RIHousing

RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations. For more information regarding RIHousing, visit www.RIHousing.com or follow us @RIHousing on Facebook and Twitter.

September 16, 2020

Press Release
RIHousing Launches New Down Payment Assistance Program for First-time Homebuyers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 16, 2020

Contact: bonds@rihousing.com 

RIHousing Launches New Down Payment Assistance Program for First-time Homebuyers

$10,000 in down payment assistance available to eligible homebuyers

Providence, RI – RIHousing today announced a new down payment assistance program for first-time homebuyers. The “10kDPA” program provides a $10,000 down payment assistance loan to eligible homebuyers in Rhode Island.

“We’re excited to be able to offer this new program to help first-time homebuyers with what is often the biggest hurdle to homeownership: the down payment,” said Carol Ventura, Executive Director of RIHousing. “Approximately 90% of our mortgage customers receive some form of down payment assistance, which greatly reduces the out-of-pocket expenses incurred during the mortgage process.”

Prospective homebuyers must obtain a RIHousing mortgage through a Participating Lender or through the RIHousing Loan Center. Homebuyers must have a minimum credit score of 660, occupy the home as their primary residence and be a first-time homebuyer purchasing a 1-4 family home or condominium in Rhode Island. The 10kDPA program is structured as a second mortgage and certain income limits and eligibility criteria apply.

“While the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted many renters and existing homeowners, it has also intensified the desire by many to buy a home,” said Peter Pagonis, RIHousing’s Director of Homeownership. “While homebuying activity slowed due to the pandemic, it has significantly rebounded since May. Record low mortgage rates are providing opportunities for buyers to lock-in low monthly mortgage payments for future years.”

In order to participate in the program, homebuyers must complete a RIHousing-approved Homebuyer Education class. The course covers a number of topics, including budgeting, understanding credit, the closing process, and the costs associated with homebuying.

“RIHousing has been opening the doors to homeownership for almost 50 years. In that time, we’ve helped over 85,000 homebuyers invest in their future and achieve the dream of owning a home,” said Ventura. “For those who are in a position to do so, now may be a great time to purchase a home. In fact, for many, owning a home is an important first step to building wealth and investing in the future.”

More information on the 10kDPA program is available online at: www.rihousing.com/10kDPA.

September 8, 2020

Press Release
RIHousing Launches New Program to Assist Rhode Island Renters

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 8, 2020

Contact: bonds@rihousing.com

401-457-1234

RIHousing Launches New Program to Assist Rhode Island Renters

Financial assistance provides housing stability for vulnerable families

Providence, RI –RIHousing today announced a new rental assistance program for eligible Rhode Island renters struggling to pay their rent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The agency’s HOME Emergency Tenant Based Rental Assistance Program (HOME E-TBRA) will help low-to-moderate income families negatively impacted by the unprecedented loss of jobs and income due to COVID-19.

“Rhode Islanders are facing unprecedented challenges as a result of COVID-19, and we should be making every effort to help families stay safely in their homes,” said U.S. Senator Jack Reed, the Ranking Member of the Appropriations Subcommittee responsible for funding federal housing programs. “This new program is a win-win because it will help families remain in their rented homes while also ensuring landlords and property owners are able to meet their own financial obligations. I will continue fighting for additional federal foreclosure prevention, rental assistance, and eviction prevention resources. This is why I have introduced S. 3620, the Housing Assistance Fund, to provide $75 billion in additional federal resources help keep families in their homes.”

To address the challenges, RIHousing is utilizing $500,000 in funding from the HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) to establish the COVID-19 E-TBRA program to provide housing stability for vulnerable Rhode Island families. The HOME program funds a wide range of affordable housing activities, including building, buying, and rehabilitating rental and single-family homes and providing direct rental assistance to low-income people. HOME is a federal block grant to state and local governments designed exclusively to create affordable housing for low-income households.

“The inability to pay rent threatens housing stability for our state’s renters in addition to the financial viability of owners and operators of affordable housing,” said Carol Ventura, Executive Director of RIHousing. “RIHousing is committed to helping Rhode Island families weather this storm. We are working hard to offer creative and effective solutions to the housing challenges facing Rhode Islanders.”

Tenants that meet income eligibility guidelines and live in multi-family rental units, duplexes and single-family residential units owned and operated by individuals or apartments owned by corporate landlords are eligible to apply. Preference will be given to households that are experiencing homelessness or are at risk of imminent homelessness as a result of COVID-19, and/or have experienced a loss of job/income as a result of the pandemic.

The E-TBRA will assist approximately 60-100 income-eligible households with security deposit and/or housing payment assistance from April 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020. Assistance payments will be made directly to landlords, who will be required to meet certain housing standards and enter into a contract with the agency.

Funds for the HOME E-TBRA program are limited. Applications will be accepted beginning Tuesday, September 8 through Tuesday, October 6, 2020. Rhode Island renters facing homelessness and/or struggling to make their rent payments due to a loss of income resulting from COVID-19 are encouraged to reach out today. Program information and an application for assistance can be found online at: www.rihousing.com/emergency-rental-assistance/.

The HOME ETBRA Program is one of several assistance programs launched by RIHousing in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the Hardest Hit Fund Rhode Island, which is also federally funded, the agency recently launched the COVID-19 Mortgage Payment Assistance Unemployment Program for Rhode Island homeowners who experienced unemployment or underemployment due to the COVID-19 health crisis and are struggling to make their mortgage payments. Earlier this year, the agency launched its HomeSafe Initiative, which provides one-time temporary financial assistance to eligible Rhode Island residents facing a short-term housing crisis. For information on COVID-19 resources and programs, visit www.rihousing.com/covid-19.

August 18, 2020

Press Release
RIHousing Launches Mortgage Payment Assistance Program to Help RIers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 18, 2020

Contact: bonds@rihousing.com

401-457-1234

RIHousing Launches Mortgage Payment Assistance Program to Help RIers

Federal Hardest Hit Funds offer COVID mortgage relief for homeowners

Providence, RI – RIHousing today announced $2 million in available mortgage payment assistance funding through the federally-funded Hardest Hit Fund Rhode Island (HHFRI) program. The new program provides financial assistance to Rhode Island homeowners negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and struggling to make their mortgage payments. Borrowers must have experienced unemployment or underemployment due to the COVID-19 pandemic to be eligible.

“During this public health emergency, housing is one of the best forms of personal protective equipment,” said U.S. Senator Jack Reed, a senior member of the Appropriations Committee. “Too many Rhode Islanders have already lost their jobs during this pandemic, and we can’t afford to have families lose their homes as well. This federal funding will help more families stay safe as they navigate the evolving challenges of COVID, and I will continue fighting for additional federal foreclosure prevention and eviction prevention resources. This is why I have introduced S. 3620, the Housing Assistance Fund, to provide $75 billion in additional federal resources help keep families in their homes.”

Senator Reed was instrumental in securing federal resources for Rhode Island through the Hardest Hit Fund (HHF), which was established by the Federal government in February of 2010 to provide targeted aid to families in states hit hard by the economic and housing market downturn. Rhode Island is one of 18 states and the District of Columbia that received money from the U.S. Department of the Treasury to help homeowners avoid losing their homes to foreclosures. During the last economic recession, RIHousing was able to utilize the Hardest Hit program to help almost 6,000 families in all 39 cities and towns keep their homes.

“It is critical that we do everything that we can to keep Rhode Islanders in their homes during this period of economic uncertainty.” said Governor Gina M. Raimondo. “There’s no question that during this crisis, the hardest hit families have been those who can least afford it. The HHFRI program provides meaningful relief to those Rhode Island homeowners.”

The HHFRI program offers a five-year, zero interest forgivable loan for eligible homeowners to pay up to six months of mortgage payments. This program helps qualified homeowners make monthly mortgage payments and/or catch up on their payments if they have fallen behind due to a recent involuntary loss of employment or reduction in employment income. Payments can also cover arrearages if the homeowner fell behind because he/she is unemployed or underemployed due to the pandemic. All borrowers must have been current on their mortgage payments as of March 1, 2020 and must meet certain income and eligibility criteria. Applicants currently in a forbearance agreement with their lenders are eligible for the program.

“The COVID pandemic has put many homeowners in a tight financial spot, making it hard to keep up with housing costs,” said Carol Ventura, Executive Director of RIHousing. “RIHousing is proud that we can offer this assistance to help Rhode Islanders remain in their homes. Since the start of the pandemic, RIHousing has been working to roll out new programs to provide relief for both renters and homeowners.”

Funds for the program are limited and will be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis. The program will be offered until full allocation is reached. Rhode Island homeowners struggling to make their mortgage payments due to a loss of income resulting from COVID-19 are encouraged to reach out today. Information and applications for assistance can be found online at: www.rihousing.com/HHFRI.

June 25, 2020

Press Release
Developer Selected to Revitalize Barbara Jordan II Apartments in South Providence

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 25, 2020

Contact: bonds@rihousing.com

401-457-1234

Developer Selected to Revitalize Barbara Jordan II Apartments in South Providence

Decision follows extensive community engagement effort

Providence, RI – RIHousing’s Board of Commissioners today announced the selection of Omni Development Corporation and The Wingate Companies (Omni/Wingate) as co-developers of the Barbara Jordan II development in Upper South Providence. The developer selection process began over two years ago and included an extensive community engagement component, rigorous staff evaluation of developer proposals and the review and unanimous approval from an outside advisory committee. Final developer selection took place at last week’s RIHousing Board of Commissioners meeting.

“The redevelopment of Barbara Jordan II marks a major milestone in our long-term vision for promoting sustainable, inclusive growth throughout Providence neighborhoods,” remarked Mayor Jorge Elorza. “By creating new housing, and particularly new affordable housing options, we are building stronger communities and taking bold action to provide homes for our residents.”

Barbara Jordan II includes 26 two- and three-story apartment buildings situated on scattered sites totaling 2.75 acres. The 26 buildings contain a total of 74 apartments, all of which are currently vacant. In 2018, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development finalized a foreclosure of the properties and in June of that year ownership was transferred to RIHousing. Developer selection marks the next phase of an extensive effort to redevelop these foreclosed and vacant properties.

“We’re incredibly excited to see the redevelopment of the properties move forward and are thankful for the level of resident participation in the community engagement process,” said Carol Ventura, RIHousing Executive Director. “Now more than ever we need to develop safe, affordable homes in neighborhoods where families can thrive. The extensive outreach and developer selection process ensure the redeveloped sites will meet the needs of residents and have a transformational impact on their lives and on the broader community.”

Local residents, anchor institutions, neighborhood organizations and other stakeholders participated in a full range of public engagement activities over a seven-month period. Participants worked together to create a vision for the redevelopment of the properties and surrounding area.  Key takeaways from the engagement process were used to craft a Request for Proposals for redevelopment of the site.

“The community is encouraged about Barbara Jordan II being brought to fruition,” said State Senator Harold M. Metts. “I am both thankful and elated that families will get decent and affordable housing, and that the present blight that has haunted us for years will be replaced by new units that will visually uplift the neighborhood.”

“We are living in a time for new beginnings,” said State Representative Anastasia Williams. “I’m thrilled to see the redevelopment plans and efforts for Barbara Jordan ll moving forward to improve families’ lives, employ local workers and significantly re-shaping a whole neighborhood on Providence’s south side, resulting in a sweet community victory for everyone.”

An advisory committee composed of representatives from the City of Providence, Providence Housing Authority, LISC Rhode Island, the Rhode Island Housing Resources Commission, and a retired executive with Enterprise Community Investment, Inc., reviewed developer submissions, interviewed candidates and made the unanimous decision to select the Omni/Wingate team.

“As a City we are in need of affordable housing, and I am very happy to see that this project has come to fruition,” stated Providence City Council President Sabina Matos. “I know how hard Deputy Majority Leader Mary Kay Harris worked to bring her community together over the course of several years.  By doing so, she ensured that those who live in the neighborhood were able to have their voices heard, and that the design will reflect the needs and wants of her neighbors. This is a great new chapter in the neighborhood, and I want to say thank you to Deputy Majority Leader Harris for leading the way.”

Providence Deputy Majority Leader Mary Kay Harris stated, “I want to thank RIHousing for listening to the needs and desires of my community. For too long, developers would come into our neighborhood and not ask us – the residents – what we needed or what we wanted to see. I believe that our community has had a chance to share our voices, and I look forward to this next chapter. This project is going to be a beautiful representation of what our community needs and will change the quality of so many people’s lives.”

The development team’s selection was based on several factors, including: their strong presence in the neighborhood, significant experience and expertise in housing development and property management, design proposal and commitment to hiring local MBE/WBE construction firms.

“Work on the Barbara Jordan properties provide a once-in-a-generation opportunity to transform this neighborhood and significantly improve the lives of local residents,” said Jeanne Cola, Executive Director, LISC Rhode Island. “This project was named for one of our country’s leaders in the civil rights movement. Barbara Jordan was one of the first U.S. Congresswomen and was a passionate advocate for all Americans. To properly restore and revitalize these homes for the community will honor the legacy she left to our country. Efforts such as these are successful because community members, stakeholder groups, for- and not-for-profit entities come together to create a shared vision. The Omni/Wingate development team is the right partner to see through that vision.”

The Providence-based Omni Development Corporation has created over 1,400 units of affordable housing at 20 developments within Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut over the last 29 years. The Wingate Company has over 30 years of property management experience, managing over 15,000 residential apartments in 18 states and 1,500 units in 19 developments in Rhode Island.

“This development will allow Omni to continue our work in the neighborhood, which was a primary focus of Joseph A. Caffey, who served as Executive Director for 24 years,” said Sharon Morris, Executive Director of Omni Development Corporation. “Omni is an experienced developer and has transformed some of the city’s poorest neighborhoods, replacing vacant lots and abandoned properties with high-quality, safe and affordable housing. Like myself, Joe was committed to the community.  Barbara Jordan II is an exciting opportunity for Omni Development Corporation and Wingate Companies.  We look forward to transforming the neighborhood and enhancing the quality of life for the residents of South Providence.”

The redevelop effort represents a significant investment in the community and its residents. More information on the development and the community engagement process can be found here: https://www.rihousing.com/barbarajordan2/.

December 23, 2019

Press Release
Funding Awards will Support the Development of Zero Net Energy Housing for Rhode Islanders

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 23, 2019

Media Contact: bonds@rihousing.com

401-457-1234

Funding Awards will Support the Development of Zero Net Energy Housing for Rhode Islanders

Multi-agency investment will create replicable models for sustainability

Providence, RI – RIHousing and the Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources (OER) announced today the award of funds to develop highly energy efficient housing for low- and moderate-income Rhode Islanders. The pilot program, Zero Energy for the Ocean State (ZEOS), is the result of a public-private partnership between RIHousing, OER and National Grid to explore innovative, replicable solutions to utilize cost saving, clean energy technologies in homes.

“RIHousing is committed to developing housing that Rhode Islanders can afford,” said Carol Ventura, Executive Director at RIHousing. “Energy efficient features in these homes will result in reduced occupancy costs for residents, thereby increasing their disposable income to meet other needs in their lives.” 

RIHousing and OER have committed a total of $675,000 in funding to three developers who will produce a range of building types in rural, suburban and urban parts of the state.

All three recipients of ZEOS Demonstration funds will develop stock plans to ensure replicability of their zero energy designs. The projects are:

  • Caldwell & Johnson: to construct a single-story duplex rental for seniors 55+ in North Kingstown. The development includes two, one-bedroom, one-bath units. Caldwell & Johnson has built this model previously and are committed to providing much needed affordable housing for seniors in the North Kingstown area.
  • Church Community Housing Corporation (CCHC): to construct eight, single-family homes in Jamestown and Aquidneck Island. Seven of the homes will be new construction and one includes the rehabilitation of an existing building. CCHC will also develop a building manual that will be easily replicable by small homebuilders.
  • One Neighborhood Builders: to construct five, small single-family, solar-powered homes in the Olneyville neighborhood of Providence. Homes will be constructed as part of a training program with Providence-based, non-profit Building Futures and in partnership with the Rhode Island School of Design and the City of Providence.

“Expanding access to cost-effective energy efficiency measures is vital to Rhode Island’s clean energy future,” said State Energy Commissioner Carol Grant. “The state has made great strides to expand our energy efficiency programs to more people. The ZEOS program is one more way we are working to support renewable and green energy efforts.” 

Developers will design and construct affordable, Zero Energy Buildings (ZEBs).  ZEBs are defined as any energy-efficient building with zero net energy consumption, meaning the total amount of energy used by a building on an annual basis is roughly equal to the amount of renewable energy created on the site.

In addition to meeting ZEB standards, developers must also participate in National Grid’s Residential New Construction Program (www.ngrid.com/save) and will work closely with program partners throughout the design, construction, and data collection phases.

“We’re excited with the level of innovation and commitment to energy efficient projects in the funding applications received,” said Chris Porter, Director of Customer Energy Management at National Grid. “Applicants will deploy a range of methods, including new and emerging technologies, thoughtful design, and sustainable building materials to meet program goals while creating a pathway for scaling ZEBs in low- and moderate-income residential sectors as a means of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”

Funding awards were announced at the December meeting of the RIHousing Board of Commissioners. A Request for Proposals (RFP) was released in July 2019 with initial funding of $250,000 available. In response to the strength of applications, the RIHousing Board of Commissioners approved an additional $375,000 to fully support the three projects.

About RIHousing

RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations. For more information regarding RIHousing, visit www.RIHousing.com or follow us @RIHousing on Facebook and Twitter.

About the Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources

The Office of Energy Resources (OER) is Rhode Island’s lead state agency on energy policy and programs. The mission of OER is to lead Rhode Island to a secure, cost-effective, and sustainable energy future. OER works closely with private and public stakeholders to increase the reliability and security of our energy supply, reduce energy costs and mitigate price volatility, and improve environmental quality.

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September 26, 2019

Press Release
RIHousing Issues Inaugural Sustainability Bonds to Support Affordable Housing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 26, 2019

Media Contact: bonds@rihousing.com

401-457-1234

RIHousing Issues Inaugural Sustainability Bonds to Support Affordable Housing

_Almost 700 apartments to include energy efficient and sustainable building features _

Providence, RI – RIHousing announced the issuance of $73.6 million of new bonds, the first ‘Sustainability Bonds’ to be offered by the agency. The sale of the bonds will fund the acquisition and rehabilitation of 752 rental homes for low and moderate-income Rhode Islanders.

“Rhode Island is leading in the fight against climate change. Here in the Ocean State, we’re committed to reducing our energy consumption and protecting our natural resources,” said Stefan Pryor, Rhode Island Secretary of Commerce. “I applaud RIHousing for utilizing all available tools to increase investments in affordable housing while reducing our carbon footprint and providing meaningful savings for residents.”

RIHousing will disburse the bond proceeds and has already identified housing developments that will utilize the funding to incorporate green and energy efficient building practices into rental properties. Multi-family developments are located in Newport (Harbor House), North Providence (Centredale Manor and Mineral Spring Gardens), Pawtucket (Prospect Heights III) and Woonsocket (Trio Partners). The majority of units are required to serve extremely low income households with incomes at or below 30% of AMI (or $24,250 for a family of four). Units at four of the developments (Harbor House, Mineral Spring Gardens, Trio Partners, and Centredale Manor) are expected to be occupied exclusively by elderly or disabled tenants or tenants of age 62 or older.

“Building upon the growing interest in socially responsible investments, these bonds will enable RIHousing to maximize funding for affordable housing while ensuring these rental homes are energy efficient, safe and healthy,” said Nicolas P. Retsinas, Chairman of the RIHousing Board of Commissioners. “Offering these bonds as ‘Sustainability Bonds’ allows investors to invest directly in bonds that finance affordable housing in Rhode Island, promote environmental benefits, stimulate economic growth, and revitalize local communities.”

Sustainability Bonds can reduce energy costs and reliance on fossil fuels while creating good homes and well-paying jobs in the construction industry. They are an important opportunity for investors seeking to make socially impactful investments and critical for attracting funding to communities to benefit some of the most vulnerable Rhode Islanders.

“RIHousing has a deep commitment to sustainability, green building technologies and energy efficiency to help preserve and protect natural resources while also reducing housing costs for residents,” said Carol Ventura, Executive Director of RIHousing. “RIHousing values and promotes healthy, durable, high quality, affordable construction, and ultimately, the cost-effective combination of sustainable building processes and affordable housing construction.”

Selected developments will undergo rehabilitation to incorporate one or more energy efficiency standards and features. These standards are designed to ensure that the housing units are economical, comfortable, durable, healthy, energy efficient and attractive. Work may include the installation of energy efficient windows, LED lighting and Energy Star appliances, upgraded unit and common area ventilation and exhaust, Virtual Net Metering to offset 100% of a building’s electric costs and water conservation features.

About RIHousing

RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations. For more information regarding RIHousing, visit www.RIHousing.com or follow us @RIHousing on Facebook and Twitter.

September 23, 2019

Press Release
Ribbons Cut on New Affordable Apartments in Barrington

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 23, 2019

Media Contact: bonds@rihousing.com

401-457-1234

Ribbons Cut on New Affordable Apartments in Barrington

_Partners and elected officials gather to celebrate the completion of __46 new rental homes _

Providence, RI – Congressman David Cicilline recently joined state and local officials, representatives of RIHousing, East Bay Community Development Corporation (EBCDC), and funding and community partners to celebrate the completion of new rental homes in Barrington.

Known as Palmer Pointe, the development includes 46 affordable apartments at two locations: 40 apartments on the Sowams Road site (former home of Sowams Nursery) and six units on three vacant lots at the Sweetbriar development on Washington Street in West Barrington. Both sites feature homes designed using traditional building styles along roads lined with sidewalks. Parking is situated beside or behind buildings to help strengthen the pedestrian network of the community.

“Important projects like Palmer Pointe are made possible when organizations like EBCDC and RIHousing work with elected officials at the local, state, and federal level to give folks the tools they need to get ahead,” said Congressman David N. Cicilline. “I commend both EBCDC and RIHousing for their continued efforts to provide hardworking families with high-quality, affordable housing and their tireless dedication to making our state a better place to call home.”

Initiatives like Palmer Pointe are integral to solving Rhode Island’s affordable housing crisis and providing well-paying jobs while creating vibrant communities with good homes. Whether living in an urban, suburban or rural setting, Rhode Islanders need rental options that they can afford, and in communities where they want to live.

“I am excited to welcome our newest Barrington residents,” said Michael Carroll, Barrington Town Council President. “They will find that they’ve moved to a very welcoming place. We’ve learned that developments like Palmer Pointe enrich our community in many ways.”

The six units at the Sweetbriar site complement the 47 affordable apartments previously completed by EBCDC in 2011. Originally envisioned as homeownership units, due to changes in the economy it was more financially feasible to continue with rental apartments using existing infrastructure, and the new buildings were able to be constructed quickly.

“The Palmer Pointe project is the latest demonstration of the EBCDC’s commitment to the communities we serve,” said Diane Mederos, Executive Director of the East Bay Community Development Corporation. “We take pride in the homes we’ve developed and in creating communities where families can thrive.”

The creation of new homes at Palmer Pointe supported 83 jobs, 58 of which were in the construction trades. Funding for Palmer Pointe came from a variety of funding sources, including a construction loan and mortgage from RIHousing, $1 million in HOME Program funding, $9.7 million in Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) equity, $2.2 million from Building Homes Rhode Island (BHRI) state bond funding and a $250,000 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).

Anne Nolan, Chair of the Rhode Island Housing Resources Commission (HRC), spoke at the event, representing the BHRI and CDBG investments in the development.

“The need and demand for affordable family housing is strong in Barrington, where only 7% of the town’s housing stock is multifamily,” said Carol Ventura, Interim Executive Director of RIHousing. “Palmer Pointe provides much needed affordable homes in a highly desirable community with only limited affordable apartment options.”

Palmer Pointe completes the Sweetbriar development on Washington Street and adds new homes on the former nursery site on Sowams Road, which reflect the architectural character of the surrounding community and maintain the scale of a single-family neighborhood. The landscaping includes common greens and shared space to create a strong sense of community for families.

“Red Stone Equity Partners congratulates our partner East Bay Community Development Corporation (EBCDC) on the completion of Palmer Pointe, our second affordable housing collaboration with EBCDC. We are pleased to provide over $9 million of tax credit equity for the newly constructed affordable housing development in the City of Barrington,” said Rob Vest, Managing Director of Acquisitions for Red Stone Equity Partners. “This project provides 46 units of affordable housing to local families and continues our commitment to being a part of affordable housing solutions in Rhode Island and across the nation.”

Apartments will be affordable to families earning less than 60% of the Area Median Income (AMI), $49,140 for a family of four.

The event also included a dedication of the new road at Palmer Point in honor of Coach Frank Murgo, who passed away in January 2019 at age 95. A long-time Barrington resident, Coach Murgo was the former coach of the Peck Junior High School basketball team and coached football in Barrington for many years. In 2017, the Barrington High School gym was named after him. Members of the Murgo family were in attendance at the dedication ceremony.

About RIHousing

RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations. For more information regarding RIHousing, visit www.RIHousing.com or follow us @RIHousing on Facebook and Twitter.

About East Bay Community Development Corporation (EBCDC)

It is the mission of the East Bay Community Development Corp to preserve the quality of family and community life in the East Bay by insuring that a full range of safe, attractive and affordable housing opportunities are available to meet the needs of all our residents.

September 4, 2019

Press Release
Partners celebrate completion of new homes in Charlestown

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 4, 2019

Media Contact: bonds@rihousing.com

401-457-1234

Partners celebrate completion of new homes in Charlestown

Shannock Falls offers 43 affordable apartments adjacent to historic Shannock Village

Providence, RI –

State and local officials joined with representatives of RIHousing, Women’s Development Corporation (WDC), Washington County Community Development Corporation (WCCDC), and funding and community partners to celebrate the completion of new rental homes in Charlestown.

The 43-unit affordable apartment development known as Shannock Falls is comprised of two separate sites in Charlestown and Richmond. The Charlestown site features 11 apartments in four buildings, with 32 units at the Richmond location. Located along the banks of the Pawcatuck River, the design of the new buildings is consistent with the historic architectural detailing of the surrounding area.

“Housing development is an integral component of economic development, and these 43 new units represent 43 new opportunities for families and individuals to prosper in Rhode Island,” said Rhode Island Commerce Secretary Stefan Pryor. “This impressive development adds to our growing portfolio of new housing. We’re glad that Governor Raimondo’s $40 million housing bond is helping to support the development of new affordable housing such as Shannock Falls. Congratulations to all involved in the project.”

The Shannock Falls development has an expected total development cost of approximately $15.6 million, will support 77 jobs (54 in construction) and create affordable apartments in a region with limited affordable rental homes. The project directly supports both the Charlestown and Richmond Affordable Housing Plans and addresses both towns’ need for additional affordable rental units.

“Communities throughout rural Rhode Island are in great need of affordable housing, particularly for families. We are very pleased that Shannock Falls will provide high-quality housing for the people of Richmond and Charlestown,” said James Comer, Executive Director, WDC.

Financing for Shannock Falls includes a variety of federal and local resources, including $11.8 million in Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) equity, $500,000 in federal HOME funding, $2.1 million in Building Homes Rhode Island state bond funding and $325,000 in town bonds. The balance of the capital stack includes a first mortgage from RIHousing and a Seller Loan.

“We’re excited and proud of our partnership with WDC and RIHousing to bring this project to fruition,” said Alice Buckley, Executive Director, WCCDC. “Efforts such as Shannock Falls rely on

the support and commitment of a range of partners and variety of funding sources. We’re excited to welcome new families and watch them grow and thrive.”

The Charlestown property stands on a 7-acre site (3 acres of which will remain undeveloped) less than a mile from the Richmond site, across from the Pawcatuck River. Construction at the Richmond site is ongoing and is expected to be completed by the summer of 2020. The Richmond buildings stand on a 64-acre site, 56 acres of which have been placed in a permanent conservation area. Currently under construction, the property will feature a community building containing a maintenance garage, community room, laundry facilities, mailboxes and a property management office.

“It is rewarding to be able to provide affordable homes that are well constructed and designed and that are affordable to families in a time of rising housing costs,” said Virginia Lee, Charlestown Town Council President.

“The project has been 14 years in the making,” said Rich Nassaney, Richmond Town Council President. “But this is only the beginning. I see a great future for families and this community moving forward.”

Single-family homes dominate the southern region of the state —with only about a quarter of its stock being multifamily housing. The projected housing need, according to the 2016 Projecting Future Housing Needs report, is for significantly more multifamily stock than single-family homes. In addition to the limited supply of rental homes, 53% of renters in the region are considered cost burdened, or pay more than 30% of their income toward housing costs.

“Shannock Falls provides people the opportunity to afford high-quality housing in the area they grew up in or may be coming back to,” said Carol Ventura, Interim Executive Director, RIHousing. “We’re excited to welcome families into their new homes and look forward to the completion of new homes at the Richmond location in the near future.”

The need and demand for affordable family housing is strong in these two communities. All units will be available to households earning less than 60% of the area median income (AMI), or $49,700 for a family of four. Apartments at the Charlestown site are leasing up now and applications for both sites are still being accepted.

About RIHousing

RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations. For more information regarding RIHousing, visit www.RIHousing.com or follow us @RIHousing on Facebook and Twitter.

About Women’s Development Corporation

Women’s Development Corporation (“WDC”) is a non-profit corporation founded in 1979. Their mission is “to design, develop, preserve and manage affordable housing for families, elderly and persons with special needs.” They have developed nearly 2,000 apartments over the past 30 years and have won awards for energy efficiency and minority participation. While they concentrate primarily on rental housing, they have also developed some homeownership for low and moderate-income families.

About Washington County Community Development Corporation

Washington County Community Development Corporation (WCCDC) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 corporation established in 2005, to provide low/moderate income residents of Rhode Island with decent, affordable housing in Washington County. WCCDC has developed 78 affordable housing units, manages the Community Development Block Grant Programs for 9 towns in Washington County and is an active member of the Housing Network of Rhode Island.

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