MassHousing Update, June 2022

Agency News

MassHousing Board updates

Governor Baker has appointed Jeanne Pinado as Chair of the MassHousing Board of Directors. Ms. Pinado is currently Executive Vice President for Colliers International and brings extensive experience in real estate finance and development. 

Lisa Serafin, who joined the Board in 2016 and served as its Treasurer, has stepped down. Ms. Serafin is a principal at Boston-based real estate advisory firm Redgate.  

MassHousing welcomes Ms. Pinado and thanks Ms. Serafin for her years of service to the Agency.

Executive Director's Corner

Some recent news and events about MassHousing Executive Director Chrystal Kornegay. 

Boston Real Estate Times’ Outstanding Women of 2022 

On April 14, Ms. Kornegay was recognized as one of the Boston Real Estate Times Outstanding Women of 2022. The 13 honorees represent all areas of the real industry, from architecture and construction to finance and development. Watch Ms. Kornegay's remarks at the event here

Black News Hour 

Ms. Kornegay was a recent guest on the Boston Globe's Black News Hour, where she gave advice to people preparing for homeownership and discussed the CommonWealth Builder program. A recording of the program is available here

Basic Black 

On Friday, April 8, Ms. Kornegay was among the guests discussing affordable housing on WGBH TV's Basic Black. View a recording of the event here.  

3 questions with Tony Richards

Tony Richards recently joined MassHousing as Vice President for Equitable Business Development. We asked him to share his vision as part of our occasional "3 questions" series. Read more...


Down Payment Assistance up to $50,000 now available

With interest rates rising and home prices continuing to break record highs, MassHousing has expanded its Down Payment Assistance program to empower more Massachusetts homebuyers. 

  • Down payment assistance of 10% of a home's purchase price, up to $50,000, is available to eligible homebuyers in Boston and these 28 select communities: Attleboro, Barnstable, Brockton, Chelsea, Chicopee, Everett, Fall River, Fitchburg, Framingham, Haverhill, Holyoke, Lawrence, Leominster, Lowell, Lynn, Malden, Methuen, New Bedford, Peabody, Pittsfield, Quincy, Randolph, Revere, Salem, Springfield, Taunton, Westfield, and Worcester. 

  • Down payment assistance of 10% of a home's purchase price, up to $30,000, is available in every other city and town in Massachusetts. 

Down Payment Assistance from MassHousing is the only such program available statewide in Massachusetts, is continually funded and is only available with a MassHousing Mortgage. Learn more about Down Payment Assistance from MassHousing

Developers' interest in CommonWealth Builder Program grows

The emphasis in the CommonWealth Builder Program is on "wealth" (that is why we capitalized the W). Specifically, it is on building new home ownership units that are affordable to first-time homebuyers of moderate-income in communities of color and disproportionality impacted communities. 

To date, seven developments with a total of 91 units in six communities have been built, had loans closed or committed or are waiting to commence construction. Eighty-one of those units will utilize CWB funding to create affordable homeownership opportunities for homebuyers with incomes between 70% and 120% of the area median (the other units are market-rate). To date, more than $11 million in CWB funds have been committed and/or funded.

But interest is growing - another 36 proposals are in the early stages of review, with a total of 1,341 units (of which 876 would be CWB units), and potential funding of $142 million. Below are two properties coming online soon.

25 6th Street in Chelsea is receiving CommonWealth Builder Funds from MassHousing. It is a transit-oriented development that will also meet the Passive House Standard for energy efficiency. The project sponsor is The Neighborhood Developers.

Under construction is Saige on Fountain, a 40-unit CommonWealth Builder development in Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood. All 40 units will be affordable to buyers with incomes below 100% of AMI. The project sponsor is Oxbow Partners.

Mass HAF provides relief to homeowners affected by COVID, prevents foreclosures

The Massachusetts Homeowner Assistance Fund (Mass HAF), can help some homeowners get current on their mortgage payments if they fell at least three months behind due to a COVID hardship. The Commonwealth's official HAF website allows homeowners to check if they are eligible and apply for assistance online. General program information can also be found here. A recent Boston Globe article profiled the program.

Rental Housing

Flurry of loan closings provides $341 million to create, preserve rental housing in 16 communities

In the last several months, MassHousing announced six transactions, which provide $341 million to create or preserve affordable apartments in 16 Massachusetts communities: 

$205 million to Providence Realty Investment, LLC will refinance and preserve affordability at 10 apartment communities with 931 apartment homes for lower-income senior citizens and families in Abington, Falmouth, Maynard, Needham, Norton, Reading, Sudbury, Sturbridge, Wellesley and Winchester.

$38.5 million to Beacon Communities LLC will preserve affordability at two apartment communities in Brockton: the 168-unit Pine Commons, where approximately $6.6 million in property improvements are planned, and the 120-unit Pine Gardens, where approximately $4.1 million in property improvements are planned.

$21.4 million to Beacon Communities LLC will refinance and extend affordability at the 103-unit Wilkins Glen in Medfield. Beacon Communities will extend the current Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment contract on 82 affordable apartments for 30 years, through 2052.

$15.2 million to Preservation of Affordable Housing (POAH) will refinance the 104-unit Bridle Path Apartments in Randolph and extend for at least 32 years the affordable rents for senior citizens living at the property. 

$41.2 million to Landmark Properties, Inc., will support the newly constructed, 150-unit, North 116 Flats in Sunderland, which has 38 family apartments for households earning at or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI) and 112 furnished apartments with 329 beds which are marketed to area students at market rates. 

$19.5 million to Valebrook Associates will refinance the 151-unit Valebrook Apartments in Lawrence and extend affordability protections for senior citizens and families for at least 29 years.

Groundbreakings & ribbon-cuttings

MassHousing staff were on hand for a number of groundbreaking and ribbon-cutting events this Spring and Summer. Below, MassHousing Executive Director Chrystal Kornegay (fifth from right) joined city and state officials to help B'nai B'rith Housing celebrate the start of work at the Residences off Baker in West Roxbury. MassHousing provided $9.7 million in financing for the new, 60-unit development. 

MassHousing Vice President of Multifamily Programs Mark Teden (third from right) was among the Agency representatives at the groundbreaking for JJ Carroll Apartments. MassHousing provided a total of $46.2 million in financing to help 2Life Communities redevelop an existing 64-unit public housing development in Brighton into a 144-unit community for older adults.

Below, both Mr. Teden (left) and Ms. Kornegay (third from left) attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Newcastle Saranac in Boston's South End. MassHousing provided Fenway CDC and the Schochet Companies with $30.3 million in financing to support an extension of affordability and extensive renovations at the 97-unit development.

Above, Chrystal Kornegay (fourth from right) joined state and city officials to help the Planning Office of Urban Affairs celebrate the start of work at Morton Station Village in Mattapan, which will create 28 new rental units and 12 new homeownership units. MassHousing provided $4.9 million in financing.

Below, Mark Teden (back row, right) joined Congressman Richard Neal, Mayor Dominic Sarno and other local and state officials to help Home City Development celebrate the completion of work at the Elias Brookings Apartments in Springfield, where $1.8 million in MassHousing financing helped to convert a former school building into 42 new apartments.

Before & after: Springfield, Cambridge apartments undergoing dramatic transformations

Bergen Circle in Springfield is undergoing $17 million in renovations with MassHousing financing. The photo above-left was taken as work began; the photo above-right shows the progress of work at the 201-unit apartment community.

808 Memorial Drive in Cambridge, a 300-unit apartment community, is undergoing substantial renovations including a new building envelope, using MassHousing financing. The older gray façade above left is in stark contrast to the vibrant new exterior, which is being fitted out with something called Kingspan Panel Systems.

Community Services

Recovery home opens in Fitchburg

Pictured left to right are SMOC's Darlene Assencoa Mazurek and Susan Gentili with MassHousing's Nichole Mikshenas

MassHousing joined local and state officials to help the South Middlesex Opportunity Council (SMOC) celebrate the opening of a new 14-unit home in Fitchburg for men in recovery. The property received a $75,000 grant through the Center for Community Recovery Innovations (CCRI), a nonprofit subsidiary corporation of MassHousing that supports affordable sober housing and related programs. To date, CCRI has awarded more than $13.8 million in grants to create or preserve more than 2,800 units of substance-free housing, in 54 Massachusetts communities.

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