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Southwest Affordable Housing Group

Industry Updates

Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) for 2015

Monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for nearly 64 million Americans will increase 1.7 percent in 2015.

The 1.7 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits that more than 58 million Social Security beneficiaries receive in January 2015. Increased payments to more than 8 million SSI beneficiaries will begin on December 31, 2014.

2015 Operating Cost Adjustment Factors (OCAFs) Published

The Operating Cost Adjustment Factors (OCAF) for 2015 were published in the October 2, 2014 Federal Register. These factors are used for adjusting or establishing Section 8 rents under the Multifamily Assisted Housing Reform and Affordability Act of 1997 (MAHRA), as amended, for projects assisted with Section 8 Housing Assistance Payments.

The factors are effective February 11, 2015 and can be found Here.

HUD Better Buildings Challenge

In 2013, the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) partnered to expand the Better Buildings Challenge (BBC) to the multifamily residential sector. Multifamily owners/agents are encouraged to become BBC Partners by submitting a Partnership Agreement to commit to reducing energy and water usage by at least 20 percent within 10 years.

HUD has established a Management Add-On Fee incentive, effective April 24, 2014, to help owners/agents pay for the additional cost of best practices in energy and water consumption. Please submit a form HUD-9839-A or B to request approval for Add-On Fees.

Revised 2014 HOME Rent Limits

On April 29, 2014, HUD published the revised 2014 HOME Rent Limits. The only rents that were revised were Low HOME Rent Limits that should have been held harmless based on decreasing 50 percent rent limits. The rent limits are effective May 1, 2014.

HUD Secretary Issues Letter to PHAs Encouraging More Flexible Admissions Policies

In June, US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan wrote a letter to Public Housing Agency (PHA) Directors across the country to clarify HUD policy related to criminal history and to encourage more flexible, reasonable admissions policies for people re-entering communities following incarceration. The letter can be seen at Here.

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