BOSTON – April 4, 2022 – MassHousing has closed on $19.5 million in affordable housing financing to Valebrook Associates to refinance the 151-unit Valebrook Apartments in Lawrence. As a result of the transaction, Valebrook Associates will extend affordability protections for senior citizens and families living at Valebrook for at least 29 years.
"Valebrook Apartments provide important affordable housing to seniors and families in Lawrence, and we are pleased that affordability will not only be preserved for them, but extended for nearly 30 years," said MassHousing Executive Director Chrystal Kornegay.
As part of the transaction, Valebrook Associates has executed a new 20-year federal Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment Contract for 150 of the 151 apartments at Valebrook. The contract will renew for an additional nine years, which is the amount of years remaining on the previous contract, for an overall extension of affordability of 29 years. One apartment is occupied by a property management employee.
Valebrook was constructed in 1980. The development includes 135 elderly units in a five-to-seven-story building with two connected wings and 16 family townhouse units in three buildings. There are 114 one-bedroom and 21 two-bedroom apartments in the senior building, and three three-bedroom and 13 four-bedroom apartments in the family townhouse buildings.
The property is managed by the Shoreline Corporation.
Valebrook Apartments 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 Valebrook Associates with a $19.5 million, 35-year permanent loan.
Robert Leahy, Treasurer of Cambridge Development Corp., General Partner of Valebrook Associates, touted the collaborative effort between Cambridge Development, MassHousing and Rockport Mortgage to create a refinance solution that provides long-term stability for the development and secures 150 units of affordable housing for many years to come.
"Rockport Mortgage is pleased to once again work with the principals of Valebrook Associates and MassHousing in preserving the affordability of Valebrook Apartments," noted Dan Lyons, President of Rockport Mortgage. "The property will continue to serve as valuable affordable housing stock for the community of Lawrence for many years to come."
MassHousing has financed 13 rental housing communities in Lawrence, involving 1,507 housing units, and an original loan amount of $178.3 million. The Agency has also provided $151.7 million in financing to 1,530 Lawrence homebuyers or homeowners.
About MassHousing’s MAP/Ginnie Mae Initiative
MassHousing has partnered with three well-known and experienced MAP lenders CBRE, Capital One and Rockport Mortgage Corporation. The MAP lender prepares the submission of each transaction for HUD's approval. MassHousing then closes the new loan and issues a Ginnie Mae Mortgage Backed Security (MBS), which has consistently provided the multifamily mortgage industry its most competitive long term, taxable interest rates.
With each MAP/Ginnie Mae loan, MassHousing continues as the mortgagee of record and becomes a Ginnie Mae servicer. This ensures affordability, as each completed transaction will require the property owner to rent at least 20 percent of the units to those earning less than 80 percent of the area median income. Affordability at many properties could be at risk were MassHousing unable to offer this product, as owners could refinance with other lenders who do not require affordability restrictions.
About Cambridge Development Corp. and the Shoreline Corporation
Cambridge Development Corp. and The Shoreline Corporation were founded in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1972 to develop, construct and manage residential apartment units of special character. The Shoreline Corporation manages approximately 1,000 units of housing in six locations. Four of the properties manage Section 8 Housing contracts.
About Rockport Mortgage Corporation
Rockport Mortgage Corporation is a privately-owned commercial mortgage banking firm founded in 1992 and located on the North Shore of Boston. Rockport specializes in providing FHA-insured loans to market-rate, affordable and senior housing communities and healthcare facilities through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and has been approved under HUD’s Multifamily Accelerated Processing (MAP) Program since the program inception in 2001. The Rockport team works collectively to navigate the complexities of FHA/HUD-insured finance programs, developing strategic solutions to meet the needs of our clients. For more information about Rockport Mortgage Corporation please visit www.rockportmortgage.com.
MassHousing (The Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency) is an independent, quasi-public agency created in 1966 and charged with providing financing for affordable housing in Massachusetts. The Agency raises capital by selling bonds and lends the proceeds to low- and moderate-income homebuyers and homeowners, and to developers who build or preserve affordable and/or mixed-income rental housing. MassHousing does not use taxpayer dollars to sustain its operations, although it administers some publicly funded programs on behalf of the Commonwealth. Since its inception, MassHousing has provided more than $27.5 billion for affordable housing. For more information, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.