The Affordable Housing Investment Fund (AHIF) is the County’s main financing program for affordable housing development. Since its creation in 1988, AHIF has helped to create the majority of Arlington’s nearly 7,500 approved affordable rental units that benefit low- and moderate-income households. In conjunction with the Affordable Housing Ordinance, this revolving loan fund provides incentives for developers through low-interest loans for new construction, acquisition and rehabilitation of affordable housing. Since the inception of the AHIF program, the County has originated more than $274 million in loans for affordable units.
A total of $13.7 million has been allocated for AHIF for Fiscal Year 2017. The fund is comprised of local and federal dollars and is also supported by loan repayments and developer contributions. For most projects, every $1 of County loan funds can leverage $3 in private funds. The AHIF is often used in combination with other Affordable Housing Financing Programs.
Arlington County is implementing a Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for FY 2018 (July 2017 – June 2018) AHIF and federal loan funds that will reflect the County Board-adopted Affordable Housing Master Plan and the accepted Implementation Framework.
How to Apply for FY 2018
The County will accept applications completed and submitted through the ZoomGrants application software. The County will not accept any other form of submittal. Applications are due March 10, 2017 by 5PM.
Read more about how to manage and submit a ZoomGrants application or watch a webinar that was presented at the January 17, 2017 FY 2018 NOFA Workshop about how to manage and submit a ZoomGrants application.
FY 2018 Project Funding Scoring Guidance
The FY 2018 NOFA for AHIF and Federal Loan Funds Scoring Guidance will guide the review and evaluation of AHIF and Federal loan fund requests and form the basis for the FY 2018 pipeline funding recommendations to the County Manager and County Board.
FY 2018 Eligibility
Staff will accept and consider proposals from non-profit or for-profit qualified applicants that meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Applicant has owned or developed at least one development that contains committed affordable (CAF), income-restricted, or market rate housing units that have been placed in service. If applying for Low Income Housing Tax Credits, applicants will need to meet VHDA eligibility requirements.
- The AHIF and federal loan funds must be used for rental units affordable up to 80% Area Median Income as published by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for the Washington, DC Metropolitan Statistical Area, adjusted for household size. If the development is mixed-income, AHIF loan funds will be applied only to the affordable portion of the development.
- The CAF units must remain committed affordable for no less than 30 years.
Out-of-cycle applications will be considered for time-sensitive 3rd party acquisitions on a case-by-case basis. “Time-sensitive 3rd party acquisition” means the development is currently listed on the open market or will be listed on the open market in the immediate future.
If you are applying to be considered out-of-cycle please e-mail a letter to Melissa Cohen email@example.com with information about the project (location, units, price) and documentation of time-sensitivity (listing or letter from owner). Describe why an in-cycle application would preclude the ability to purchase. DO NOT fill out ZoomGrants application unless advised by Arlington County staff to do so.
ZoomGrants technical support staff can help with technical questions or general inquiries about the system. Please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
All questions related to the application content must be submitted in writing to email@example.com.
Read the Questions and Answers document that contains answers to the questions staff has received to-date. This document will be regularly updated as new questions are received.
Federal HOME Community Housing Development Organization (CHDO) Funds Available
Up to $2 million in federal HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) Program and Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program Income funding is available to interested CHDO-certified organizations. CHDO funds may be used for rental or homeownership projects. Please review the CHDO Set-Aside application as well as the CHDO designation application for more details. The application deadline has been extended to Friday, March 10, 2017 by 5PM.
Additional funding may be obtained by applying for Affordable Housing Investment Fund (AHIF) funds through the FY 2018 NOFA application, which is due Friday, March 10.
Project Funding Guidelines for FY 2017 (July 2016 – June 2017)
The AHIF Funding Guidelines Final FY17 guide the review and evaluation of AHIF loan requests and form the basis for making funding recommendations to the County Manager and County Board. The guidelines describe:
- Guiding principles that apply to all project proposals
- Criteria for demonstration of need/consistency with the County Affordable Housing Master Plan
- Project effectiveness and financial efficiency review
- Special considerations
Examples of projects that may meet these guideline criteria include:
- Acquisition, rehabilitation and/or development of affordable multifamily units
- Specialized housing for the elderly, the homeless or persons with disabilities
- Affordable home ownership opportunities
How to Apply for FY 2017
- Review the AHIF Funding Guidelines Final FY17
- Contact us to discuss the proposed project and the loan application process.
- Submit a letter of intent, as described in Exhibit 1 of the Guidelines. All letters of intent will receive a response from Housing Division staff with a recommendation. If the recommendation is to proceed with an application, you will continue to step 4.
- Submit a completed AHIF Application. Provide additional materials and meetings with staff as requested.
- Work with staff to prepare for and attend Housing Commission, County Board and public meetings as needed. Following the review at those meetings, the County Board will vote on the funding request.
Note: If a project requires site plan or use permit approval, additional review and a community process may be necessary. Read more about site plan and use permit reviews.