January 2020
AHFA Welcomes New Board Member
The AHFA board and staff welcome James W. Rutland IV of Lowder New Homes in Montgomery to the Board of Directors.

Rutland was appointed by Alabama Speaker of the House Mac McCutcheon to serve a seven-year term beginning January 1, 2020, and ending January 1, 2027.

Rutland is a third-generation home builder and developer and has been in the residential construction, development, and real estate sales business in Alabama for the past 26 years. He currently serves as President of Lowder New Homes, Inc.
 
Rutland is a member of the Greater Montgomery Home Builders Association, where he has served in many roles and on many committees, including President in 2005. He currently serves as it’s Governmental Affairs Chair. 
 
At the state level, he has served in numerous positions on the HBAA Executive Committee. Most recently, he served as the President of HBAA in 2018. On the national level Rutland has served as a NAHB Board of Director since 2005 and in 2018 was elected to a Life Directorship.
FY19 Annual Report Released in January
In early January, AHFA announced the release of our  FY19 Annual Report .

Our work shows us every day that affordable housing transforms communities and drives local economies. You’ll find more information about our work in FY19 further in the report. 

We also highlight some of the Alabamians we’ve helped over the past year -- people like Bird Shi, who needed to buy a home for his family of six and could only do so because of the down payment assistance provided by our Step Up program. You’ll also hear how affordable rental housing has changed the lives of a family of three after they experienced periods of homelessness moving from Florida to Alabama. These are the people behind the numbers, and they are the reason for the work we do. 

The report also contains a link to our  financial statements .
Annual Application Workshop Held in Preparation for 2020 Competitive Application Cycle
AHFA multifamily staff and nearly 150 members of the development community gathered January 10 in Prattville for AHFA's 2019 Application Workshop.

During the workshop, AHFA staff discussed changes in the 2020 HOME/Housing Credit Plans, including application, underwriting, environmental, and compliance procedures, and new DMS online application features. 

This annual event helps developers prepare their applications for the HOME, Housing Credit, and/or National Housing Trust Fund programs. AHFA will accept applications for HOME and/or Housing Credit funding in February.

All application information is posted at  http://bit.ly/2ktkyUa .
First Quarter 2020 Leading Lenders Announced
Each quarter, AHFA recognizes the  top loan officers  who are closing the most deals using AHFA homeownership programs: Step Up, Affordable Income Subsidy Grant, and Mortgage Credit Certificates.

Below are the top three Leading Lenders for Fiscal Year 2020, 1st Quarter are (in alphabetical order). Congratulations to these lenders! We appreciate them utilizing our programs to make buying a home more affordable for Alabamians.
Fiscal Year 2020, Through the First Quarter

Multifamily Division:
  • 27 affordable housing developments in the pre-construction phase
  • 29 developments under construction
  • 18 developments pending 8609s (IRS form to obtain housing credit allocation from AHFA)
  • Compliance audits have been completed on 394 of 394 developments, as of December 31, 2019

Single-Family Division:
  • $49.4 million in affordable mortgage financing to 320 Alabama families

ServiSolutions:
  • 80,207 loans being serviced, totaling $5.74 billion
Success Story: Sunrise Village, Talladega

Latynda Bentley and her son, Chilton, and daughter, Za’Ajzsa, are new residents at Sunrise Village. They moved to the Talladega area several years ago so Chilton could attend school at the Alabama School for the Blind (ASB).

Last year, their house caught on fire, and they had nowhere to go. Latynda sent her daughter to live with her grandmother while Chilton went to live in the dorms at ASB. Although he liked the experience at first because he got to socialize with friends, he soon became homesick and missed living with his mother. So she stepped up her search for a new place to call home and found Sunrise Village.

It’s a unique development that offers specialized services for vision and hearing impaired residents including working with the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind to make sure residents attending their schools get back and forth to campuses, and securing an eye-scan reader for residents who are sight-impaired. The machine scans the text from their mail or any other notices and reads the text to them.

Latynda says, “Chilton has been going to ASB since he was 3 years old, and I don’t trust him going anywhere else because of his eyesight. I want him to stay in that environment and continue to learn how to be independent because they have taught him so much.” She goes on to call finding Sunrise Village a blessing and shares how happy they all are to be living there.
Realtor Spotlight: Derek Silas, Sweet HOMElife Real Estate, Mount Olive  

Although he may be a relative newbie in the real estate industry, Derek Silas is already making his mark. Silas began his career in real estate when he joined Sweet HOMElife in 2018. He won the Heavy Hitter Award for his office last year. He was also a Top 3 producer and Top 5 in units sold.

Q: How did you hear about AHFA programs?
A: Through workshops initially, but Iast year I partnered up with Tracy Causey at Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation as my main lender. (Tracy has been recognized as an AHFA quarterly Leading Lender several times.) She further educated me about AHFA programs during our adventures in working to get clients approved for home loans.

Q: What do you think is the biggest benefit of AHFA programs?
A: Definitely the down payment assistance. I can get many more buyers into homes due to the minimum credit score which gives them more options that they normally wouldn't have. AHFA programs allow buyers to get into homes without a lot of money out of pocket, and this helps them turn the page for a new chapter in life.

Q: What do you enjoy most about your job?
A: As an agent that specializes in first time homebuyers and helping people rebuild their credit, it is so rewarding to see people get into a home of their own when they thought they would have to rent for years to come. Everyone has a story, and it is great that I get to play a small part in such a monumental chapter in their book of life.

Q: What do you think makes you stand out as a Realtor?
A: My parents struggled my entire childhood with finances and credit. This is a career where I get to reach out to people sharing similar experiences at various points in their life and normalize their situation, and give them the help and guidance my parents never really had. I surround myself with a team of people that share the same views so we can provide the best home buying experience for our clients each and every time.
Education & Outreach: January
January 7: Realtor training with Century 21 Brandt Wright Realty in Montgomery
January 15: Lender training with Avadian Credit Union in Huntsville
AAHA Accepting Applications for 2020 Resident Scholarships
The Alabama Affordable Housing Association (AAHA) is accepting applications for its annual resident scholarship awards.

Applicants must be accepted or enrolled in an accredited vocational or technical school, college, or university; have at least a "B" average or 3.0 GPA; and meet all other application criteria.

Scholarship awards will be made to qualified tenants and resident family members living at an AAHA-member apartment complex and property/divisional management staff of AAHA-member companies and their children. Applications must be received by February 28.

For more information:   http://www.theaaha.org/scholarships/.
Escrow Analysis Cycle: What It Means for You
Each year, ServiSolutions analyzes escrow accounts to ensure adequate funds exist to pay for ta xes and insurance. After escrow analysis is complete, we will send you an escrow account disclosure statement by mail. Below is the schedule for your state:

  • Alabama: statements out in February, changes effective with March 1 payment

  • Mississippi & Missouri: statements out in March, changes effective with April 1 payment 

  • North Carolina: statements out in April, changes effective with May 1 payment

  • Arkansas & Washington: statements out in July, changes effective with August 1 payment

An escrow analysis is an audit of receipts and disbursements for your escrow account to determine whether adequate funds exist to pay for taxes and insurance. Increases or decreases in your annual tax or insurance bills may c ause your monthly mortgage amount to change.

For more information, visit www.servsol.com.
AHFA Offices to Close for February Holiday

AHFA, ServiSolutions, and Hardest Hit Alabama will be closed Monday, February 17 in observance of the Presidents' Day holiday. We will reopen at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, February 18.
Alabama Housing Finance Authority | Montgomery, Alabama | 334.244.9200 | Email | Website