November 8, 2010 – (RealEstateRama) — Mayor Menino today welcomed new homeowners to Twenty at Luma, the final phase of the Boston Housing Authority’s Orchard HOPE VI Redevelopment effort. Currently, seven families have moved in and others are due to be moving in during the next few weeks.
Seventeen of the 20 new homeowners are expected to benefit from the BHA’s Loan-to-Purchaser program, which is providing 56 low-income families with up to $20,000 as a subordinate-mortgage loan. That program coupled with the affordable housing opportunity at Twenty at Luma is giving some former public housing and low-income Boston residents a big boost into homeownership.
“These programs are an excellent opportunity to realize people’s dreams of owning their own home,” said Mayor Menino. “I’m honored to be able to welcome these families into the neighborhood and into a new beginning.”
The Loan-to-Purchaser funds were provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development through the Washington Beech HOPE VI Redevelopment. To qualify, families must be below 80 percent of Area Median Income ($64,400 for a family of four). Loan recipients also must complete a first-time homebuyer certification course and receive long-term homebuyer counseling from Neighborhood of Affordable Housing, Inc. (NOAH) which is managing the program for the BHA.
Loans of up to $20,000 and totaling $1.12 million is being given to 56 families who have been identified and are working their way through the program. First priority was given to Washington Beech residents, then to other BHA residents and finally to City of Boston residents who were income eligible. For Twenty at Luma, priority was given to Orchard Gardens residents, BHA residents and City of Boston residents. A lottery process was used to fairly distribute the 20 new homes among the 106 families that applied.
“This shows that the American dream of home ownership is achievable for low-income families,” said William McGonagle, BHA Administrator. “Part of our mission is to help families become self-sufficient and this is a great example of the BHA doing just that.”
Maria Ortiz, a former resident of the Mary Ellen McCormack public housing development and a participant in the Loan-to-Purchaser program, was among the residents who received a visit from the Mayor today. Ms. Ortiz was the first to close and move into her new home. She works at New England Baptist Hospital and lives with her 14-year old son.
“I’m very excited about this,” said Ortiz. “It’s a great opportunity for myself and my son.”
The housing consists of wood frame townhouses and duplexes with bay windows, porches, and pitched roofs reflective of traditional architectural styles in the neighborhood. All of the units have individual yards and off-street parking spaces, and they are equipped with energy-saving features, including 16 units with solar panels.
The project includes five 2-bedroom units and fifteen 3-bedroom units. One of the 3-bedroom units is a handicapped-adaptable home. At $135,000 for the 2-bedroom units and $150,000 for the 3-bedroom units, the homes are affordable to a broad range of low-income buyers.
Twenty at Luma is a partnership between Madison Park Development Corporation and the BHA. The development is located on Dudley, Adams and Eustis Streets in the Dudley Square neighborhood near Orchard Gardens.
Press.Office (at) cityofboston (dot) gov