BOSTON – MassHousing has closed on $10 million in affordable housing financing to Preservation of Affordable Housing (POAH), to refinance the 65-unit Chestnut Gardens Apartments in Lynn and extend affordability protections for lower-income senior citizens and residents with disabilities living at the property for at least 25 years.
“Chestnut Gardens in Lynn is an affordable housing resource for seniors and residents with disabilities. We are pleased that this transaction will preserve and extend affordability at Chestnut Gardens for at least 25 years,” said MassHousing Executive Director Chrystal Kornegay. “POAH was committed to ensuring the residents of Chestnut Gardens will continue to have quality affordable apartment homes that create housing stability and offer economic opportunity.”
“POAH was pleased to work with Rockport Mortgage, MassHousing and HUD for the refinancing of Chestnut Gardens, which will help us extend the Section 8 subsidy contract and make upgrades that further address the needs of seniors and disabled individuals at Chestnut Gardens. This is one of several affordable housing communities that POAH has refinanced or will refinance with the support of the MassHousing MAP/Ginnie Mae Joint Venture refinancing program in Massachusetts,” said POAH CEO Aaron Gornstein.
As part of the transaction, POAH executed a new 20-year federal Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment Contract for the 65 apartments at Chestnut Gardens. The contract will renew for an additional five years, which is the number of years remaining on the previous contract, for an overall extension of affordability of 25 years.
“Chestnut Gardens’ location and unique amenities are well suited to serve the needs of its elderly population” noted Dan Lyons, President of Rockport Mortgage. “We’re very pleased to have worked with POAH and MassHousing to refinance and secure the affordability of this important housing asset within the city of Lynn for years to come.”
Chestnut Gardens was originally constructed in 1895 and was substantially rehabilitated in 1982, with another renovation in 2008. The four-story building contains 55 one-bedroom and 10 two-bedroom apartments.
Chestnut Gardens was refinanced through MassHousing’s Multifamily Accelerated Processing (MAP)/Ginnie Mae Joint Venture Initiative with lender partner Rockport Mortgage Corporation. MassHousing offers the MAP/Ginnie Mae loan program to the owners of rental housing through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). HUD provides expedited Federal Housing Administration (FHA) insurance approvals through the MAP program. MassHousing has surpassed $1.75 billion in cumulative MAP lending and the Agency has built the largest MAP lending program of any state housing finance agency in the nation.
The combination of FHA insurance and a Ginnie Mae guarantee enables borrowers to access taxable mortgage financing with lower interest rates, while preserving and extending affordability for hundreds of low-income individuals, senior citizens, and families. MassHousing is providing POAH with a $10 million, 35-year permanent loan.
MassHousing has financed 25 rental housing communities in Lynn involving 3,941 housing units with an original loan amount of $267.9 million. The Agency has also provided $430.5 million in financing to 2,941 Lynn homebuyers or homeowners.