A. J. Johnson Partners with Mid-Atlantic AHMA for December Training on Affordable Housing

person A.J. Johnson today 11/08/2022

During the month of December 2022, A. J. Johnson will be partnering with the MidAtlantic Affordable Housing Management Association for two in-person training sessions intended for real estate professionals, particularly those in the affordable multifamily housing field. Following the in-person training sessions, AJ will be providing a review of testable areas and in-person administration of the Housing Credit Certified Professional (HCCP©) exam.  The following sessions will be presented:

December 13: Intermediate LIHTC Compliance (In-person training in Richmond, VA) - Designed for more experienced managers, supervisory personnel, investment asset managers, and compliance specialists, this program expands on the information covered in the Basics of Tax Credit Site Management. A more in-depth discussion of income verification issues is included as well as a discussion of minimum set-aside issues (including the Average Income Minimum Set-Aside), optional fees and use of common areas. The Available Unit Rule is covered in great detail, as are the requirements for units occupied by students. Attendees will also learn the requirements relating to setting rents at a tax-credit property. This course contains some practice problems but is more discussion oriented than the Basic course. A calculator is required for this course.

December 14: Advanced LIHTC Compliance  (In-person training in Richmond, VA) - This full-day training is intended for senior management staff, developers, corporate finance officers, and others involved in decision-making with regard to how LIHTC deals are structured. This training covers complex issues such as eligible and qualified basis, applicable fraction, credit calculation (including first-year calculation), placed-in-service issues, rehab projects, tax-exempt bonds, projects with HOME funds, Next Available Unit Rule, employee units, mixed-income properties, the Average Income Minimum Set-Aside, vacant unit rule, and dealing effectively with State Agencies. Individuals who take both two days of training will be provided with study materials and a practice exam to assist in preparation for the HCCP exam, to be administered on December 15.

December 15: Review of testable areas and administration of the Housing Credit Certified Professional (HCCP©) exam (In-person exam in Richmond, VA). Following the two days of intensive and comprehensive LIHTC training, AJ will provide a review of program requirements and will administer the HCCP exam in person.

These sessions are part of the year-long collaboration between A. J. Johnson and MidAtlantic AHMA and is designed to provide affordable housing professionals with the knowledge needed to effectively manage the complex requirements of the various agencies overseeing these programs.

Persons interested in any (or all) of these training sessions may register by visiting either www.ajjcs.net or https://www.mid-atlanticahma.org.

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House and Senate Add Homeless Students and Veterans as LIHTC Student Exception

On November 16, 2022, S. 5108 was introduced in the U.S. Senate, and H.R. 9313 was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. The title of the bill is "Housing for Homeless Students Act of 2022. If the bill becomes law, it will amend Section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code to qualify homeless youth and veterans who are full-time students for purposes of the low-income housing tax credit. The homeless student rule would have a look-back period of seven years prior to occupancy in a LIHTC project and the veteran exception would have a five-year look-back. In other words, if a full-time student was homeless at any point during the seven years preceding occupancy at a tax credit property, that person will not be considered a student for tax credit purposes. Likewise, if a veteran has been homeless at any time during the five years preceding occupancy at a tax credit property, that person will not be considered a student for tax credit purposes. The Senate bill has been referred to the Senate Finance Committee and the House Bill to the House Ways and Means Committee. There is no specific timeframe for the bill to become law and owners and managers of LIHTC properties should not change the current procedures being followed relative to student status.

2023 Income Limits Will Be Delayed

The U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) normally publishes annual income limits in early April of each year. However, complications with calculating the limits due to COVID-19 will cause a delay in the release of the limits in 2023. According to HUD, the limits will be released on or about May 15, 2023. HUD normally uses American Community Survey (ACS) Data from three years prior to the income limit release to determine family median incomes and income limits. However, the Census Bureau did not release the 2020 one-year ACS data due to data collection difficulties because of the COVID-19 pandemic. For this reason, HUD will use 2021 ACS data to determine the 2023 median income and income limits for low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) properties. Why is this important? Owners of LIHTC properties will have to wait a little longer than usual to determine the income and rent levels available to them for 2023. While increases in income limits nationally are expected to be less than in prior years, most areas should still see some increase in limits, which will allow for a modest increase in rents in 2023.

Virginia Housing Looking for Compliance Staff

Virginia Housing (formerly Virginia Housing & Development Authority) has three positions open in Compliance & Asset Management. If interested, you may access the position descriptions at https://us63.dayforcehcm.com/CandidatePortal/en-US/VHDA. Virginia Housing (VH) is one of the premier Housing Finance Agencies in the nation and I have had the privilege of working with them for more than 40 years. The Agency provides an excellent work environment and has a comprehensive benefits program, including medical, dental, vision, and prescription drug coverage. VH also has both long- and short-term disability plans and various options for retirement plans. If you (or someone you know) are looking for an excellent opportunity on the public side of the affordable housing field, I encourage you to check out the open positions at VH and consider applying.

Rural Development Suspends Interim Recertification Requirements for COLA Recipients

On November 10, 2022, the Rural Development Service released an Unnumbered Letter granting a temporary exception to tenant recertification requirements. On October 13, 2022, the Social Security Administration announced there will be an 8.7% increase in Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits in 2023. This will increase the average SS payment by more than $140 per month starting in January. The RD Section 515 program requires that tenant households be recertified at least annually or when household income changes by $100 or more per month. Since the increase would require recertifications for most Social Security recipients, the Agency is temporarily waiving the recertification requirement for tenants whose household income, regardless of income type, has increased by more than $100 but less than $200. Accordingly, during the Exception period, tenants will not be required to recertify unless their household income changes by $200 or more per month. This temporary waiver will be in place for all of 2023 and will expire on December 31, 2023. During the period of the waiver, tenant households must be recertified at least annually or whenever a change in household income of $200 or more per month occurs. The requirement that borrowers must recertify for changes of $50 per month if the tenant requests that such change be made, is still in effect. Keep in mind, the exception does not waive the requirement for the annual renewal certifications. Owners will receive a copy of this notice from RD. Once received, the notice must be posted in a conspicuous location at the property and a copy of the notice must be provided to all tenants.

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