LIHC to Preserve East Harlem Affordable Community

The firm has funded more than $20 million in capital improvements for Lakeview Apartments, which was constructed in 1974 and comprises four buildings.
Lakeview Apartments

LIHC Investment Group has entered into an agreement with the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) and New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) to preserve the affordability of 446 units at Lakeview Apartments in East Harlem, N.Y. This partnership will protect existing and future tenants through a 40-year regulatory agreement with the city and state, maintaining the property as affordable.

Located at 4 E. 107th St., the community was constructed in 1974 and comprises four buildings. The property was built under the state’s Mitchell-Lama program and has been offered as affordable for decades. Throughout the course of time, the community has been affected by financial and physical distress. 

LIHC has funded more than $20 million in capital improvements that went toward fixing the elevators, repairing leaks, replacing electric baseboard heaters, new kitchens and bathrooms for each unit, addressing Local Law 11 issues, installing a $1.5 million security camera system and replacing thermostats and transformers. Hallways are currently under renovation to be outfitted with new hardwood floors, as well as reducing the number of lobbies from four to two in order to enhance security. 

Preserving affordability 

Under the agreement, 435 of the total apartments will move from the Mitchell-Lama program to a Section 8 Project-Based Assistance (PBRA) contract, keeping the units affordable for individuals and families early up to 80 percent AMI, ensuring residents don’t spend any more than 30 percent of their total income on rent. The remaining 11 units will convert over to Enhanced Vouchers and if vacant, will be available to new residents earning up to 110 percent AMI. Rents for all 138 families will be reduced as a result of this new arrangement. In addition to the preservation, the New York City Council approved an Article XI tax abatement, which states that 20 percent of the units will be set aside for the formerly homeless. 

“In the case of Lakeview, you’ve got a property on Central Park, one of the desirable locations in the world, which was in danger of losing its affordability forever,” Charlie Gendron, principal of LIHC Investment Group, told Multi-Housing News. “As home to a high number of retirees, families and low income residents, this agreement not only protects existing tenants, but will also maintain Lakeview as a source of affordable housing for the next four decades.”

Image courtesy of LIHC