The California Housing Partnership Corporation (CHPC) tracks all income-restricted apartments that have been developed with funding from HUD (in the form of either development financing, or a Project-Based Rental Assistance contract with the property owner, or both), development financing from Low-Income Housing Tax Credits, or the Off-Farm Program development financing from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). As of mid-2019, CHPC’s inventory of publicly funded income-restricted apartments in Santa Clara County had 5,637 units on 70 properties built with HUD funding , 26,232 units on 268 properties built with Tax Credit funding, and 56 units on 3 properties built with USDA funding.
Most cities in Santa Clara County, with the exception of Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, and Monte Sereno, have at least one HUD-funded project and one Tax Credit-funded project. The USDA-funded units are all in Gilroy.
When affordable housing is built with public funds, the housing units must be income-restricted for a specific period of time. Once that period of time has lapsed, the apartments can be converted to market rate, a process that usually results in displacement of residents who relied on the affordability restrictions. This conversion also results in the loss of affordable housing units, increasing pressure in lower-income households.
“At-risk” rental apartments are those affordable to lower- or moderate-income households that are in danger of conversion to market rate when the term of the affordability restriction ends. CHPC assigns a level of risk to each property: Low, Moderate, High, or Very High. These levels of risk are assigned using a formula that takes into account the length of time until an affordability restriction and/or a HUD Project Based Rental Assistance contracts- typically in the form of Section 8- expires, and whether the owner is a for-profit or a nonprofit entity.
As of mid-2019, out of the total of 31,975 units noted above, 30,062 are rated as Low Risk. The remaining 1,913 units with higher ratings are distributed around the County as shown in the matrix below.
Current At-Risk Rental Properties in Santa Clara County
|Jurisdiction||Moderate Risk||High Risk||Very High Risk|
Source: California Housing Partnership Corporation
Cities and counties are required to provide in their housing elements a program for preserving at-risk properties, including actions to monitor, finance, provide technical and regulatory assistance, and actions to assist tenants.