Greystone Affordable Development and WWJ Continue Affordable Housing Portfolio Preservation Effort with Latest $55.8 Million Transaction in North Carolina
April 3, 2018
Greystone Affordable Development announced the closing of a $55.8 million multifamily housing transaction in North Carolina, marking its 12th collaboration with Columbia, SC-based WWJ, LLC, one of the largest owners and operators of affordable housing in the Southeastern U.S., with 23 properties in North Carolina alone. Together, Greystone Affordable Development and WWJ have preserved over 5,600 affordable housing units to date, using the model they pioneered together a decade ago.
The latest recapitalized portfolio of affordable housing properties included 10 aged USDA Rural Development Section 515 properties comprised of 440 apartment homes serving low-income households in six counties across the state. In its third statewide-pooled transaction in North Carolina, Greystone’s affordable housing development group worked closely with USDA’s Rural Housing Service (RHS) State and National Offices and the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency to coordinate and secure the financing needed to acquire and rehabilitate this at-risk and much-needed housing.
“This transaction clearly demonstrates the integral role that the Housing Credit and Private Activity Bonds play in preserving affordable housing for the families who need it the most,” said Scott Farmer, Executive Director, North Carolina Housing Finance Agency. “The close cooperation of public and private partners enable such complex financial transactions to succeed.”
“This closing is particularly special as it marks the ten-year anniversary of the completion of our first groundbreaking portfolio transaction with WWJ,” said Tanya Eastwood, President, Greystone Affordable Development. “They trust in our expertise and ability to seamlessly orchestrate the financing sources and transaction management process, and we are grateful to have fostered such a strong partnership as we pursue our mission of providing safe, decent, and affordable housing.”
The financing plan combined both public and private funding, and included:
Tax-Exempt Bonds – Single issuance of $17.69 million in multifamily private activity tax-exempt bonds from the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency. The short-term bonds were purchased by TD Bank.
Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Equity – Purchase of 4% Federal LIHTCs by an affiliate of Community Affordable Housing Equity Corporation (CAHEC), generating $9.79 million in capital contributions.
Historic Tax Credit Equity – Purchase of Federal Historic Tax Credits by an affiliate of CAHEC, generating $620,000 in capital contributions.
RHS 515 Debt – Assumption and subordination of $11.92 million of original USDA Section 515 debt. The Section 515 program is a direct loan program designed to provide subsidized loans to developers of affordable housing in rural markets. In addition, $3.59 million in new USDA Section 515 debt was awarded to 3 of the properties through Rural Development’s Multifamily Preservation and Revitalization (MPR) Program.
Senior Debt – $10.68 million in USDA Section 538 loans provided by Greystone Servicing Corporation, Inc.
Other Miscellaneous Sources – totaling $1.51 million.
The rehabilitation plan includes a fast-paced construction process, estimated to be complete within 11 months, during which no residents are expected to be permanently displaced. Substantial renovations, averaging approximately $33,000 per unit, will include both interior and exterior improvements. Particular emphasis will be placed on bringing the properties up to modern standards, addressing accessibility, functional obsolescence and deterioration. Two of the properties are historic, built in 1920, while the others were built in the 1980’s, indicating a crucial need for rehabilitation and modernization in order to remain viable housing options in the markets they serve.
“Given the critical role that affordable housing plays in our state, we are wholly supportive of WWJ’s efforts to preserve their multifamily stock in a responsible, sustainable way,” said Byron Waters, Director of Multi-Family Housing, USDA Rural Housing Service. “This collaborative effort was a success for all parties involved, and we are especially happy to see our goal of preserving rural housing for future generations fulfilled.”
“Greystone has been an incredible partner over the years, and we are proud to look back on all that we have accomplished together,” said Joe Wilczewski, Vice President of Finance, WWJ, LLC. “Our efforts, combined with those of our investment partners, USDA Rural Development, and the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency have not only preserved the value of our portfolio, but benefitted local economies and improved the lives of 440 North Carolina families.”