Policies related to affordable housing and community development that are administered by the DC Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) may originate on the federal level of government, or the local level.
For example, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) establishes the definition of the term “affordable housing” that is used by state and local governments, like the District of Columbia. DHCD is a local government agency; and HUD is a federal agency. However, both agencies are committed to increasing housing and community development opportunities. DHCD receives substantial funding from HUD that is primarily used to benefit low and moderate-income residents.
What Are Some of DHCD’s Local Housing Resources?
Some programs include:
- The Housing Production Trust Fund, which requires that projects seeking such funding provide housing units for households within certain income tiers. Mayor Muriel Bowser has allocated $100 million in her budget for the HPTF.
- The Inclusionary Zoning Affordable Housing Program requires that a certain percentage of units in a new development or a substantial rehabilitation set aside affordable units in exchange for a bonus density.
Other DC Agencies/Instrumentalities Involved in Affordable Housing
Those agencies/instrumentalities are:
- The Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED), which is charged with executing the Mayor's economic development strategy, to include preserving and producing more affordable housing in the District. It has an Economic Intelligence Dashboard (http://open.dc.gov/economic-intelligence/affordable-production-preservation.html) that provides information about affordable housing production and preservation by DHCD, DMPED, DCHA, DCHFA and DC’s Inclusionary Zoning program. See dmped.dc.gov.
- The DC Housing Financing Authority (DCHFA) was established to stimulate and expand homeownership and rental housing opportunities in Washington, D.C. This is accomplished through issuing housing mortgage revenue bonds that lower the homebuyers’ costs of purchasing homes and the developers’ costs of acquiring, constructing and rehabilitating rental housing. Its signature program, DC Open Doors, makes homeownership affordable by offering qualified buyers home purchase loans and down payment assistance. See www.dchfa.org.
- The District of Columbia Housing Authority (DCHA) is an 11-member governing body made up of district community and business leaders. It administers several voucher programs to help low- and moderate-income residents find affordable housing. See www.dchousing.org.