Newsletter: September 2019
CHI Housing Orientations Offer $25,000 Grants
Community Housing Innovations holds monthly orientation sessions for first-time home buyers interested in our $25,000 down payment assistance and HUD-certified counseling. In the last three months, nearly 100 people have packed each of the free counseling seminars on Long Island and Westchester County. The seminars go over the important points of owning a home, as well as how to apply for the funding through CHI from the NYS Affordable Housing Corporation. In the last 20 years, CHI has administered approximately $17 million to 750 first-time home-buyers for their first purchase. We were awarded $1.4 million to distribute this year to purchase homes in Westchester County and Long Island.
The next Housing Orientations held in October will be:
Oct. 3rd in Westchester at Grinton Library in Yonkers from 6:30-8:00 pm
Oct. 17th on Long Island at Elmont Library in Elmont from 6:30-8:00 pm
CHI's New Concept for Affordable Housing
Community Housing Innovations is promoting a new concept for developing affordable housing in existing buildings. The cost of building new affordable housing has ballooned to over $400,000 to produce a one or two bedroom apartment, of which about $300,000 is taxpayer subsidy. In a front-page article in The Journal News , CHI Executive Director Alec Roberts argues that rather than focus on building new affordable units, three times the number of affordable apartments could be created by paying landlords an upfront fee in return for reducing rents for 20 to 30 years to low income households. households.  https://www.lohud.com/story/news/local/westchester/2019/08/26/how-create-affordable-westchester-housing-affordably/2075822001/
CHI Awarded $100,000 Grant
Wells Fargo has stepped up to the plate to help CHI repair aging buildings whose grants expired after 20 years. The award will allow the agency to provide repairs or replacements in three of its buildings with ten apartments on Long Island purchased 20 years ago. This will allow the agency to continue renting to low income families and individuals. The scopes of work include replacement of worn, cracked, missing, or sub-par flooring, light fixtures, wall tiles, kitchen cabinets, vanity and medicine cabinets, and toilets as needed. All electrical outlets will be checked and upgraded to GFI's as needed/required. Some boilers will be replaced to improve energy efficiency. 
We extend our heartfelt thanks to the Wells Fargo Foundation.

Every Act of Kindness Matters
Each night Community Housing Innovations houses 1,000 homeless individuals who are either intact families or single people. Beyond our core mission to help them find permanent housing, CHI staff assist them with ways of becoming more self-sufficient. While government grants can assist with the basics of housing costs, our residents often struggle to secure jobs or complete their education because they have limited incomes and can't afford to register for a entrance exams for college or vocational training programs that would lead towards a job. There are often unexpected challenges, like a car that needs repairs, or a family emergency that prompts the need for travel or they must meet with a specialist for a health issue..
CHI's HAND UP fund asks donors to assist CHI clients with specific needs that will help them achieve greater social and economic independence. 
The HAND UP fund, since its inception in June 2019, has approved 29 applications for assistance with a cap of $300.00 per request. Clients have been able to have urgent needs met that included: transportation, furniture or rental application fees. The fund has also invested in clients’ futures by paying for educational and vocational exams such as the high school equivalency (TASC), Certified Nursing Assistant, Security Guard or Food Processor that lead directly to employment.
Recently, through The HAND UP fund , CHI was able to provide bus fare for a mother , residing in one of our family shelters, to travel to Florida in order to process her section 8 application.
Here is the heartwarming update we received from the family:

D ear HAND UP Fund Friends:
I would like to thank you for your extremely generous gift of $376.00 that was used towards paying my transportation to and from Gainesville Florida. I am very excited to inform you that help from the Hand UP Fund has allowed me to go and collect my section 8 voucher which will allow my family to purchase suitable housing and no longer be homeless. I am grateful that your organization was willing to help and I am excited about the prospect of moving to a new place and getting a new start on life. Had it not been for your support and trust in me, none of this would have been possible. I sincerely thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Sincerely,
The Thompson Family
Earn Less Than $100K- Get a discount on rent!
It may sound strange, but market rents have escalated so much in Westchester that the City of White Plains is offering discounts for households earning up to the Westchester County median income ($96,250 for a two-person household, $108,300 for 3 people) at Continuum , one of the most luxurious new rental buildings in White Plains. If your income falls within that standard, you can get a discounted rent of up to $644 per month off of the average rents for similar size units.  Set at the foot of the Metro North railroad station, Continuum offers modern sophistication and luxurious amenities, from a stylish sky lounge to an elegant poolside terrace. It’s about half an hour to Manhattan via express train and moments from vibrant shops, restaurants, and rooftop bars in White Plains. Continuum has studios and one-bedroom apartments at the lower rents, with only eight left, so act now if you’re interested. Contact Randell Beck of CHI Realty at rbeck@chigrants.org .
Your support enables CHI to meet the increased need
for housing and supportive services,

Community Housing Innovations, Inc. is a nonprofit organization providing housing and human services that support social and economic independence.

With offices in Westchester and Long Island
914-683-1010 or 631-475-6390