Affordable Housing
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  1. #1
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    Default Affordable Housing

    As part of my mall fight, I've been doing research on Massachusetts 40B law - Affordable Housing. And then I thought that it might be useful for some of you to think about. I'm not sure what the laws are in other states (really not sure about other countries), but it would definitely be worth looking into.

    For Eastern Massachusetts where the median house price is $357,000, a family of 4 can make up to $66,000 and qualify for affordable housing. There are asset qualifications as well which differ by project. I can't tell my husband to quit his job, take a lower paying job and then qualify - as we have assets (our current house). Also, there are rules on selling the units. So, you can't buy a unit cheaply and then turn around and sell it at full-market price.

    A developer builds a bunch of townhouses/condos and 20 to 25% of them have to be "affordable". From the outside, you should not be able to tell which are the affordable units and which are not and they must be dispersed throughout the project. The insides will differ - linoleum, carpet throughout, lower end appliances, formica counters.

    Example: Where I checked out yesterday, the affordable price (remember this is Massachusetts) was $189,000 and the "regular" priced unit was $500,000 for a 1600 sqft townhouses. In Massachusetts they have lotteries to determine who gets a unit.

    So, those of you thinking about getting into your first home, might want to research this type of option in your state.

  2. #2
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    That's really interesting. We already have a house, but there is a development (it's super nice) right on the edge of Cleveland and I'll bet they did that there with some of the units.

  3. #3
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    I'm in MA and I know several people who have gotten their first houses this way.

    Of course, we make way too much money to qualify. So we're keeping our eye on foreclosures.

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