Affordable Housing Building Decarbonization Summit

OCTOBER & NOVEMBER 2020 (ALL REMOTE ONLINE) Hosted by the California Housing Partnership w/ support from the Energy Foundation & Greenlining Institute This summit is a forum for nonprofit development teams to discuss and recommend equitable decarbonize strategies for new and existing affordable housing properties. Amidst the perfect storm of a pandemic within a pre-existing housing emergency within a growing climate crisis, what factors should the state consider in addressing these overlapping Read More

New Updates to California’s Affordable Rental Housing Benefits Map

The Affordable Rental Housing Benefits Map ( provides policymakers, housing providers, advocates and elected officials with the data and visual tools to communicate the positive impacts of affordable housing in California. The California Housing Partnership is excited to announce the following updates to the Benefits Map as of September 1, 2020:   1 | Map layers. The new 2020 TCAC/HCD Opportunity Map to affirmatively further fair housing, developed with input from the California Housing Partnership, was Read More

Join the Partnership at this Year’s Fall Conferences!

We miss seeing your friendly faces! The pandemic has made personal connections more difficult this year, so we hope you will be able to join us at these conference sessions our team is presenting this Fall.  August: Housing California – 8/31 to 9/4 Impact of the Presidential Elections on Federal Housing Policy Monday, August 31, 2020 and after (on-demand) MODERATOR: Matt Schwartz, President & CEO, California Housing Partnership SPEAKERS: Peter Lawrence, Read More

Stop Wasting Water! A Crossover Strategy Guide for Multifamily Asset Management

Water-Energy Nexus: Crossover Report In a study commissioned by the California Energy Commission (CEC) in 2017, out of approximately 100 multifamily buildings tested with crossover detection methods about 50% had crossover.    Crossover occurs when an apartment building’s hot water and cold water sources mix in the pipes, often due to leaking or failed valves. Crossover wastes energy, diminishes tenant comfort, increases bills, and increases greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) in California. It also Read More

GREEN Webinar: Clean Energy Resources For COVID-19 Response, Bay Area

Join us next Thursday for this upcoming sustainable housing webinar with ELPN, “Clean Energy Resources for COVID-19 Response.” Given the economic impact of the pandemic, the need to reduce operating costs and tenants’ bills is more urgent than ever. This webinar will provide a high-level overview of California and Bay Area specific policies and programs focused on building decarbonization for existing multifamily affordable housing properties. It will also look at how Bay Read More

Racial Disparities in Housing Security from COVID-19 Economic Fallout

Racial disparities in access to safe, stable, and affordable housing were present long before the COVID-19 pandemic hit California. People of color are more likely to experience  housing cost burdens, homelessness, and housing instability in the state and are less likely to own homes and acquire wealth, due in large part to California’s long history of discrimination in public and private housing markets, structural racism, and government-sponsored segregation. Recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s new Household Pulse Survey, conducted Read More

Webinar: Lenders and Investors Respond to COVID-19 Impact, Part II, August 18th

Join the California Housing Partnership on Tuesday, August 18 from 3:00-4:30 pm for Part II of the conversation we began in April about the challenges that nonprofit developers of multifamily affordable housing face in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. This timely discussion with investors, lenders, and nonprofit developers will delve into how the field is adapting to a changing lending and equity market, construction and lease-up delays, and closings and Read More

The Need for Long-Term State Financing of Affordable Housing – Dashboard Series #2

The California Housing Partnership’s new Housing Needs Dashboard reveals not only that 1.3 million low-income renter households in California do not have access to an affordable home, but also that this situation has persisted for years.  My 22 years of experience working in affordable housing has made clear to me that the private market is unable to produce homes for these households, since below-market rate rents do not cover the costs Read More

Bay Area Rents Drop But Are Still Too High – Dashboard Series #1

In this California Housing Needs Dashboard blog series, members of the Partnership’s research team highlight key indicators accessible in our new online data tool. The Dashboard provides key affordable housing statistics and housing market metrics for all 58 counties of California. WHO CAN AFFORD TO RENT With the impact of the coronavirus pandemic stretching on, our first spotlight is on rent trends in the San Francisco Bay Area. News outlets have Read More

Webinar: Housing Needs Dashboard Demonstration, July 9

The California Housing Partnership recently launched the Housing Needs Dashboard, a new online data tool to discover and compare housing data for every California county and the state overall: Affordable housing need versus supply Housing market condition indicators Federal and state affordable housing funding levels  Multifamily housing production and preservation trends Join us on Thursday, July 9, at 11:30 am for a one-hour demonstration and Q&A of the unique features and Read More

The Pathway to New All-Electric Low Income Housing in CA

The winds of change are blowing in California—toward all-electric new buildings powered by an increasingly clean electric grid. A key question for equity, health, and the environment is how to ensure that affordable housing providers in California—which serve thousands of low-income families—are supported in building efficient, emissions-free all-electric homes. MidPen Housing’s first all-electric affordable housing development: Edwina Benner Plaza, Sunnyvale CA Credit: MidPen Housing Already 30 local governments in California have passed building Read More

Time Off this Friday to Honor Juneteenth

In light of evolving current events, our organization is encouraging staff who can to take all or at least part of this Friday off to commemorate Juneteenth. We have invited staff to use this time to reflect, advocate, grieve, or whatever feels most important in the wake of George Floyd and now Rayshard Brooks’ deaths, and the large upheaval happening during this moment. This is a cause that feels especially important this year as Read More

New Online Dashboard from the California Housing Partnership Visualizes California’s Housing Needs

The California Housing Partnership is excited to announce the launch of a new Housing Needs Dashboard, an interactive online affordable housing data portal. The Partnership designed the dashboard as a tool through which policymakers, planners, affordable housing providers, and advocates can access key California housing metrics and track indicators over time at both the state and county level.    “We hope the Housing Needs Dashboard will become an essential tool for federal, state Read More

Black Lives Matter

Dear friends and colleagues,  The staff and board of the California Housing Partnership are heartsick at the pervasive and systemic injustices that George Floyd’s murder, and those of the many other Black and Brown people before him, has laid bare in our society. We know well from the work we do in the housing sector that our laws and financial institutions have systematically denied equal opportunities to Black people through redlining, Read More

55 of California’s Counties Lacked Enough Affordable Homes Even Before the Pandemic

NEWLY PUBLISHED: 2020 Affordable Housing Needs Reports  From the California Housing Partnership   Recent events have amplified the longstanding injustices caused by social inequities that continue to plague our society. Since 2014, the California Housing Partnership has published reports documenting the failure of California’s housing markets to meet the needs of low-income families. Even before COVID-19, 1.3 million low-income California households lacked access to affordable homes. New pandemic-caused unemployment, displacement and massive state deficits are upending previous Read More

GREEN Webinar: Clean Energy Resources for COVID-19 Response

The California Housing Partnership (the Partnership), in coordination with SCANPH, is excited to host a webinar discussing Clean Energy Resources for COVID-19 Response on Wednesday, June 3 at 10:30 AM. This webinar is designed to provide a high-level overview of major clean energy programs available in Southern California for your portfolio of existing multifamily affordable housing properties. The need to reduce operating costs and tenants’ bills is more urgent than ever. Read More

Governor’s Budget Makes Critical Downpayment to House the Homeless; Bolder Action Needed Ahead

Yesterday, Governor Gavin Newsom released a revised state budget for California (May Revision). The California Housing Partnership is heartened to see that despite the state’s anticipated record budget deficit, the governor is standing by earlier commitments to continue funding $500 million in state Low-Income Housing Tax Credits in 2021. These state housing credits, first authorized last year thanks in large part to the leadership of Assemblymember David Chiu, will enable dozens of new Read More

TCAC and HCD re-release draft changes to Opportunity Map in rural and rapidly changing areas (comments due May 18)

Last week, the Tax Credit Allocation Committee (TCAC) and the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) re-released the draft 2020 TCAC/HCD Opportunity Map for public comments, which are due at 5pm on Monday, May 18. Directions on how to submit comments are available on the California State Treasurer’s website.    TCAC and HCD use this map to inform policies which aim to increase access to opportunity-rich areas for low-income families with children, as Read More

California Affordable Housing Providers Face Potential $1.7 Billion COVID-19 Loss

In an April 16th post from President & CEO Matt Schwartz, the California Housing Partnership made the case that while Congress, the Governor and the Legislature have taken important steps to address the needs of renters, there is a ticking financial time bomb represented by low-income households living in rent-restricted housing unsupported by rent subsidies, who have lost substantial income due to COVID-19 and will be unable to pay their full rent for months to Read More

Webinar: Lenders and Investors Respond to COVID-19 Impact, April 30

The COVID-19 pandemic reveals how critical safe, stable, homes are to our communities’ ability to get and stay healthy. However, as rent collections fall, construction is delayed, and a bear market slows LIHTC investment opportunities, the affordable housing industry faces unprecedented challenges to the financial health of the affordable housing development sector.  Join NPH and the California Housing Partnership on Thursday, April 30 (3:00 pm-4:30 pm) for a moderated panel of Read More

California Affordable Housing Priorities for Congress in the Next COVID-19 Stimulus

At a time when access to affordable homes was already extremely challenging (as described in this recent report by the California Housing Partnership), COVID-19 has devastated California’s low-income communities by taking away incomes and mobility and in some cases, health. The California Housing Partnership thanks Congress for the critical supports provided in the March 25th CARES Act and the Governor and Legislature for their emergency assistance to ensure that households are Read More

Demystifying California’s Affordable Homes Shortfall

Much of my work at the California Housing Partnership focuses on analyzing the state of affordable rental housing in California and its impacts on individual residents and families, taxpayers, and local economies. Last month, these efforts culminated in our release of the 2020 California Affordable Housing Needs Report. One of the major data findings from this year’s report is the number of low-income renter households in California who cannot find an Read More

Last Chance to Protect the Community Reinvestment Act

In the midst of the devastation wrought by the COVID-19 crisis and the need to focus on immediate responses, it is difficult but essential to recall what else is important to the future of our ability to continue creating high quality affordable homes. One of the most effective tools to our success in building affordable homes has been the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), and it is at risk in this very Read More

Request to Support Affordable Housing Legislation in 2020

Amidst today’s uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and its implications for the daily lives of California’s lowest-income families, now more than ever we need our state leaders to strengthen our ability to house and protect low-income families, seniors, and individuals. We applaud Governor Newsom’s Executive Order protecting renters and ask the Legislature to move forward with longer term plans and resources.   This is why the California Housing Partnership is proud to sponsor four bills Read More

New Report Finds Bay Area Needs 235,656 More Affordable Homes

A new report from the California Housing Partnership finds that the Bay Area needs 235,656 more affordable homes just to meet existing needs. The report finds that: High housing costs are effectively doubling official county poverty rates. More than two-thirds of the lowest income households are severely rent burdened, meaning they are paying more than half their incomes in housing costs with little left for other basic expenses. Despite the passage Read More

New Report Reveals How AHSC Addresses California’s Most Pressing Challenges

Today, the California Housing Partnership released a new policy brief — co-authored with Enterprise Community Partners — that documents the substantial community and environmental benefits made possible by the first four rounds of the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities (AHSC) program. By requiring coordination of housing, transportation, and land use planning, AHSC simultaneously and holistically addresses three of California’s most pressing challenges: housing affordability, transportation, and climate change mitigation. To date, the program has awarded $1.1 Read More

HUD Changes Policy so Low-Income Renters can Access $100M/Year in Solar PV Benefits

The launch of the Solar On Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) program on July 1, 2019 marked the largest solar energy investment in multifamily affordable housing to date in the State of California. The overall goal of the SOMAH program is to provide financial incentives for installing photovoltaic (PV) systems on multifamily affordable rental housing homes. What makes SOMAH unique and exciting is that it is the only program that provides low-income residents Read More

Mapping the Benefits of Affordable Housing in California

What social and economic benefits are generated when we relieve low-income families of housing insecurity and rent burden? Or when we help households move to healthier higher resource neighborhoods? How much local economic activity, job creation, and tax revenue is generated when we build and preserve affordable housing? To help answer these questions, the California Housing Partnership recently launched the Affordable Rental Housing Benefits Map, a one-stop, interactive mapping tool for viewing Read More

Why invest cap-and-trade funds in Affordable Housing & Sustainable Communities

As a member of the campaign’s advisory committee, I am excited to announce the launch of the investAHSC campaign website to advocate for the Affordable Housing & Sustainable Communities (AHSC) program’s continued funding through the State of California’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund.  With its first three funding rounds, AHSC has invested more than $701 million statewide to build affordable housing for 6,443 families, reduce 1.6 million metric tons of carbon dioxide Read More

New Low-Income Weatherization Program (LIWP) Multifamily Report Assesses Cap-and-Trade Program Benefits

LIWP Report Cover

This report published by the California Housing Partnership and the Association for Energy Affordability presents new findings on the climate and community benefits delivered by the Cap-and-Trade-funded Low-Income Weatherization Program (LIWP) Multifamily since its launch in 2016.  The report finds that LIWP Multifamily has delivered on its ambitious goals, including: Statewide impact: The program has committed $54.4 million to invest in 90 properties across 19 counties in disadvantaged and farmworker communities across the state. Read More

Affordable Housing Production Stagnant Despite Recent Advances; One in Three Households Unable to Afford Housing and Basic Living Costs in California

A new report from the California Housing Partnership shows that recent state initiatives designed to stimulate production of more affordable rental housing have yet to make a significant impact in reducing the shortfall of 1.4 million affordable homes needed or in housing the 130,000 Californians experiencing homelessness on any given night. California Housing Partnership CEO Matt Schwartz says, “It is unacceptable that one in three California households cannot afford to live here. The Read More

Virtual Net Energy Metering 101: GREEN Talk Shares Impacts and Challenges for Owners

Virtual Net Energy Metering (VNEM) has been a requirement for many California solar programs including the Low Income Weatherization Program (LIWP), Multifamily Affordable Solar Housing (MASH) and Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) which incentivizes a significant portion of tenant solar PhotoVoltaic (PV) system loads in multifamily affordable housing properties. The California Housing Partnership hosted a GREEN Talk on October 17, 2018 with the discussion focused on VNEM tariffs and some Read More

2019 – A Happier New Year for Affordable Housing in California

As we head into the first full week of 2019, I wanted to share five reasons why I am feeling optimistic about the state of affordable housing in California: 1.  California’s own Nancy Pelosi was elected Speaker of the House of Representatives last week. While she can’t take us back in time to pass the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act of 2017 bill or change the Senate or White House leadership that have resulted in the Read More

New AHSC Report Assesses Cap-and-Trade Housing Program Benefits

AHSC 2018 Report

Today, the California Housing Partnership and Enterprise Community Partners published a report that uses newly available data to assess the climate and community benefits delivered by the Cap-and-Trade-funded Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities (AHSC) program through its first three funding rounds. To date, the program has awarded $701 million to 77 location-efficient developments across the state that combine affordable housing and transportation infrastructure.   The report finds that AHSC has largely delivered on the ambitious goals set by the Read More

GREEN Updates: New Funding Opportunities and Policies

The California Housing Partnership continues to engage with public agencies and electric utilities to ensure that multifamily affordable housing properties have the necessary resources to meet ongoing energy, water and climate requirements.  This digest highlights funding opportunities and shares program and policy updates.   PROGRAMS Funding for Energy Efficiency, Solar and Energy Storage CPUC’s Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing Program (SOMAH) California Housing Partnership is helping to implement the California Public Read More

Governor Signs SB 1477: Incentives for New Low-Emissions Affordable Homes

During the Global Climate Summit last week, the Governor signed SB 1477 (Stern), which will incentivize low-emissions technologies for affordable housing. SB 700 (Weiner), which will incentivize energy storage, is currently on the Governor’s desk. Recognizing that we need climate solutions that support new affordable housing, the California Housing Partnership worked with housing, energy equity, environmental and industry organizations on these two bills. In May, the California Energy Commission mandated that Read More

Partnership Chosen to Ensure Equitable Solar Access on California Multifamily Affordable Housing

The California Housing Partnership is part of a team of leading clean energy and affordable housing organizations in California to run the new Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) program. The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) initiative will provide up to $100 million annually for 10 years to fund solar energy installations on multifamily housing serving low-income and disadvantaged communities throughout the state, with a goal to help reduce energy bills for residents. Read More

GREEN Updates: Programs and Policies on Energy Efficiency and Solar

In my previous blog on GREEN updates, I highlighted new funding opportunities in sustainable housing, upcoming programs, and policy changes. The California Housing Partnership wants to ensure that multifamily affordable housing properties have the necessary resources to meet ongoing building and climate requirements. This digest continues with program and policy updates including building codes and Time of Use electricity rates, and highlights funding opportunities for energy efficiency and solar improvements. PROGRAMS Funding for Energy Read More

5 Things Affordable Housing Owners should know about Default TOU Electricity Rates

Starting in 2019 and 2020, Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), Southern California Edison (SCE), and San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) will move its residential customers to default Time-of-Use (TOU) electricity rates. With TOU rates, electricity prices vary throughout the day and are most expensive during the early evening. These prices impact operating budgets, household bills and cost-savings for energy improvements at a property. This transition may adversely impact low-income renters if Read More

GREEN Updates: New Funding Opportunities and Policies

The California Housing Partnership continues to engage with public agencies and electric and water utilities to ensure that multifamily affordable housing properties have the necessary resources to meet ongoing building and climate requirements. This digest highlights funding opportunities and shares policy and program updates on sustainable housing. Tweet   PROGRAMS Funding for Energy Efficiency, Solar and Energy Storage LADWP’s Board of Commissioners Approve $100M for Low-Income Multifamily Housing The advocacy of Read More

GREEN Talk: Best Practices on Solar Energy Investments in Affordable Housing

Investing in solar energy systems for affordable housing properties continues to be a critical opportunity and issue for nonprofit housing owners and public housing authorities throughout California. The California Housing Partnership hosted a GREEN Talk on May 30, 2018 with discussion focused on solar operations and maintenance. Our three esteemed presenters touched on issues of performance monitoring, financing models, buy-back due diligence and proactive maintenance. They shared best practices for affordable Read More

Climate Resilience Starts at Home

Originally published in the California Adaptation Forum, April 19, 2018 Californians have suffered a devastating year of climate change impacts, ranging from wildfires to deadly heat waves.  In communities where extreme heat is becoming the norm, rising energy costs threaten the health of children and seniors as families struggle to pay their utility bills.  Low-income Californians pay the highest percentage of their income on energy bills, and these energy burdens are Read More

Thank You California Members of Congress for Supporting Affordable Housing

This week, California Housing Partnership joined affordable housing advocates nationally to thank our members of Congress for supporting the recent 12.5% increase in the 9% Housing Credit program and a 10% increase in the FY 2018 HUD budget. While this omnibus is a much needed boost to offset federal cuts in these programs, as our recent report makes clear, there is still much work ahead of us. Tweet     It Read More

Spending Bill Increases LIHTC and Affordable Housing Funding for FY2018

Dear Colleagues:    Below are my highlights from the FY 2018 federal spending bill that was finalized yesterday by Congressional leaders. I am pleased to report that thanks to the heroic efforts of our national advocate allies and several members of our state’s Congressional delegation, there is relatively good news to share:   The bill includes language allowing Section 202 Project Rental Assistance Contract (PRAC) properties to convert under RAD, a Read More

Why Congress Must Act NOW to Restore the Value of the Housing Credit

The U.S. House of Representatives is negotiating final changes to the March 23rd 2018-19 spending bill as I write, meaning that the last chance to affect the contents of the House proposal, including fixes to problems created by the GOP Tax Bill, is likely TODAY. While the Senate will have a lot to say about what the final spending bill looks like, fixing the House bill is the best way to Read More

Solar energy savings coming to affordable housing residents

Low-income renters will get a break in their electricity bills—and a foot in the door to California’s clean energy economy—thanks to the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) program. Under a proposal recently approved by the California Public Utilities Commission, the program will create incentives for rooftop solar installations that benefit tenants at multifamily affordable rental housing properties.  It will also bring renewable energy, bill savings and quality jobs to communities Read More

Last Chance to Save Affordable Housing Bonds and Tax Credits

Now that the U.S. Senate has approved its own tax reform bill replete with hastily scribbled hand-written notes, which you can read here, Congress has entered the final stage in which the Senate and House will attempt to reconcile differences between their two bills through a conference committee. While significant differences between the two bills remain, all expectations are that they won’t be enough to stop the leaders from the majority Read More

New Senate Tax Reform Bill Released; Call for Action in the House

Senate Finance Committee Chair Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) released his modifications to the tax reform bill last night having just added a provision that repeals the Obamacare individual mandate to generate approximately $330 billion in savings over 10 years to pay for the 20% corporate tax rate they are desperately trying to achieve. (Unlike the House, the Senate is bound by the Byrd Rule to demonstrate that the bill will not increase Read More

ACTION NEEDED: Tell Congress to Restore Private Activity Bonds & 4% Housing Credits!

I am writing you from Washington, D.C. to alert you that there is a time-sensitive effort today being led by Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-IL-14th), who is co-chair of Congressional Municipal Finance Caucus, to restore Private Activity Bonds in the House tax reform bill, H.R.1.  My October 27th blog described the damage that will be done to California if the Republican House tax reform proposal eliminates tax exempt private activity bonds (PABs) including multifamily housing bonds, thereby Read More

Message to Housing Advocates: Don’t Panic. Push Back with Facts, Stories and Emotion

My October 27th blog described the damage that will be done to California if the Republican House tax reform proposal eliminates tax exempt private activity bonds (PABs) including multifamily housing bonds, thereby also eliminating California’s ability to use 4% Low Income Housing Tax Credits. Unfortunately, the draft bill released by House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) last week as H.R.1 eliminates PABs and therefore 4% Housing Credits, which I Read More

Solar Financing 101: CHPC GREEN Talk Highlights Solar Financing Options and Lessons

Last month, 20 nonprofit developers joined a California Housing Partnership Corporation (CHPC) Green Rental Home Energy Efficiency Network (GREEN) “Talk” to learn the basics of solar financing, and hear from other developers who are actually using these financing tools.  Panelists for the talk included solar experts from GRID Alternatives, and three developers—Mercy Housing, Eden Housing, and National Housing Trust—who provided their practical expertise. Below, you will find the highlights from this Read More

AB 693 Proposed Decision Released

Good news – the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) finally released its Proposed Decision to implement Assembly Bill 693 creating the $1 billion Solar on Multifamily Affordable Homes (SOMAH) program for affordable rental properties located in investor-owned utility territories!  As a reminder, the CPUC is in the process of establishing guidelines for the SOMAH program, which will provide up to $100 million in incentives per year for 10 years, depending on cap and trade Read More

Matt/CHPC LIHTC Federal Advocacy Action Alert

Saving the Low Income Housing Tax Credit: Now is the Time More than 325,000 lower income California households are currently living in apartments produced and made affordable through federal Low Income Housing TaxCredits (Housing Credits) authorized by Congress 30 years ago. More than 7 million Californians will directly benefit from these affordable apartments over the next 50 years thanks to these federal Housing Credits. After years of talk, the U.S. Senate Read More

Capturing Water Savings Through On-Bill Financing: Lessons from BRIDGE Housing

CHPC’s water affordability initiative works to increase access to water conservation resources for the nonprofit multifamily affordable rental housing owners and the lower-income tenants they serve in California. Below is the fifth in a series of reports on leaders, best practices, and emerging trends in water conservation for affordable housing.   Finding ways to pay for energy efficiency and water retrofits can be a challenge for owners of affordable rental housing Read More

State Adds $100M to AHSC NOFA

It isn’t often possible to change the thinking of state officials tasked with the job of spending Cap-and-Trade funds governed by complex and overlapping regulations and statutes. Not to mention when it must be done under the ever-watchful eye of the state Department of Finance. But I give huge credit to Strategic Growth Council (SGC) Executive Director Randall Winston for being open to a request first made by the California Housing Partnership on Read More

New Tax Credit Regs Make Progress, More to be Done

The California Housing Partnership Supports State Efforts to Increase Access to Opportunity for Low-Income Families, but Funding Regulations Must Reflect Cost Premium Developers Face in Higher Resource Areas. Low-income families in California, particularly those of color, have for decades faced a landscape of constrained choice when it comes to finding a place to live. Discriminatory policies and land use decisions have restricted these families’ access to high-resource areas that are most Read More

Addressing California’s housing crisis: Invest in our Communities

It’s not news that our state has an affordable housing crisis. The California Housing Partnership has consistently documented the shortage of affordable homes in every county of the state and shown that the gap has grown each year. Californians feel the impacts directly, for ourselves, our families, and the people in our communities. It’s also no mystery how we got here. When the state stopped investing in affordable housing for our Read More

New Grant to Document Displacement of Low-Income People of Color in the Bay Area

The California Housing Partnership is pleased to announce a $100,000, one-year grant from The San Francisco Foundation to document the relationship between rental housing affordability and patterns of displacement, segregation, and unequal access to opportunity for low-income people of color in the Bay Area since 2000. The Urban Displacement Project at UC Berkeley will be our partner on this project, which will conclude with publication of our findings in spring 2018. Read More

Efficiency Opportunities in Common Area Laundry Facilities – a discussion with Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Future

CHPC’s water affordability initiative works to increase access to water conservation resources for the nonprofit multifamily affordable rental housing sector in California. Below is the fourth article in a GREEN series focused on leaders, best practices, and emerging trends for water conservation in affordable housing. GREEN members are responding to the drought. These are their stories. Laundry facilities are the nexus of four utilities: electric, gas, water, and wastewater. Unfortunately, owners Read More

Responding to Trump’s 2018 Budget: a California Perspective

Late last week, the White House released President Trump’s so-called “Skinny Budget” for 2018, which proposes cuts of $54 billion to domestic programs including more than $6.2 billion (13%) to HUD programs and likely deep cuts to USDA’s housing programs. In addition to eliminating the valuable Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program ($357 million for California) and making deep cuts to the already underfunded public housing capital and operating funds, the Read More

Los Angeles Dept. of Water and Power Pursues “Customer First” Agenda: An interview with Commissioner William Funderburk

CHPC’s water affordability initiative works to increase access to water conservation resources for the nonprofit multifamily affordable rental housing sector in California. Below is the third article in a GREEN series focused on leaders, best practices, and emerging trends for water conservation in affordable housing.  GREEN members are responding to the drought. These are their stories. Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (DWP) is the largest municipal utility in the United States. Read More

Your (Interim) Guide to Getting Whole Building Energy Data

Consistent access to energy usage data is a transformative tool for reducing energy consumption at multifamily properties. Data enables building owners to target the most cost efficient energy upgrades and ensure the long-term sustainability and affordability of properties. Further, benchmarking is often a prerequisite for participating in federal and state energy efficiency and renewable incentive programs in order to establish a baseline against which realized savings can be measured. The U.S. Read More

HCD Director says California will further fair housing despite Trump

The federal Fair Housing Act of 1968 has for half a century required the State of California and other federal grantees to affirmatively further fair housing by reducing segregation and increasing access to opportunity for racial minorities and other protected classes under the Act. Last year HUD created a new Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule to better enforce this duty and to provide technical guidance to grantees. However, Congressional Republicans Read More

CA Agency Recommends Low-Income Energy and Water Legislation and Task Force

On December 14, 2016, the California Energy Commission (CEC) approved the SB 350 Barriers Study mandated by Senate Bill 350 to address barriers for low-income households and disadvantaged communities to participate in energy efficiency and renewables opportunities. The purpose of the study is to identify how new legislation and joint agency efforts can establish transformative goals and policies to enable all Californians to realize the benefits of California’s transition to a clean Read More

GREEN and EEFA Develop 2017 Priorities for Energy Efficiency, Water, Renewable Energy

Sixty leaders from housing, energy, environmental, and workforce development organizations gathered in Los Angeles and San Francisco this month to help the California Housing Partnership’s Green Rental home Energy Efficiency Network (GREEN), Natural Resources Defense Council, and Energy Efficiency for All (EEFA) partners set priorities for our collective energy efficiency, water and renewable energy work in California for 2017. In the New Year, GREEN-EEFA members will organize through a series of Read More

California Regulators Dedicate $80 Million to Empower Affordable Housing Owners to Play a Key Role in Meeting the State’s Energy Efficiency Goals

On November 10, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) issued a decision that dedicates $80 million to empower government and non-profit owners of rent-restricted affordable housing to participate in Energy Savings Assistance (ESA) programs for low-income households. The Green Rental home Energy Efficiency Network (GREEN) and Energy Efficiency for All (EEFA) Coalition* secured these funds and significant ESA program improvements by highlighting the program barriers that caused the four large investor-owned Read More

Self-Help Enterprises Responds to Drought in San Joaquin Valley

CHPC’s water affordability initiative works to increase access to water conservation resources for the nonprofit multifamily affordable rental housing sector in California. Below is the second article in a GREEN series focused on leaders, best practices, and emerging trends for water conservation in affordable housing. We will cover graywater reuse, high efficiency fixtures, sewer service fees, sub-metering, and landscape irrigation in urban and rural settings. GREEN members are responding to the drought. These Read More

Eden Housing “Water Warriors” Cut Water Use by 20 Percent

CHPC’s water affordability initiative works to increase access to water conservation resources for the nonprofit multifamily affordable rental housing sector in California. Below is the first article in a GREEN series focused on leaders, best practices, and emerging trends for water conservation in affordable housing. We will cover graywater reuse, high efficiency fixtures, sewer service fees, sub-metering, and landscape irrigation in urban and rural settings. GREEN members are responding to the drought. Read More

Cap-and-Trade Dollars at Work

FIRST AFFORDABLE HOUSING & SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES FUNDED DEVELOPMENT IN SILICON VALLEY BREAKS GROUND The Housing Authority of the County of Santa Clara (HACSC) this week celebrated the groundbreaking for its Laurel Grove Family Apartments in San José, a transit-oriented development that will provide 81 units of housing for low-income families earning between 20 percent and 50 percent of Area Median Income, with 20 units set aside as supportive housing for special Read More

Certificated State Tax Credit Bill Will Increase Equity Pricing

On June 27th, 2016, Governor Brown signed into law important changes to the State Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program that will substantially increase equity pricing for nonprofit developers of LIHTC-financed properties by allowing them to certificate state housing credits and sell them separately from federal LIHTCs. The California Housing Partnership and State Treasurer John Chiang co-sponsored and helped draft this legislation as this year’s SB 873, which was authored by Senator Jim Read More

All Utility Allowance Innovations Are Local: A look at Tulare County’s Solar UA

The Housing Authority of the County of Tulare (HACT) has developed a promising model for enabling owners of low-income affordable rental housing to finance the cost of installing solar PV systems on tenant meters. In this blog, I describe how other housing authorities can and should emulate Tulare’s innovative and yet relatively simple approach, which has the power to overcome the split incentive challenge and unduly complex administrative barriers that typically plague Read More

California “Penny Wise and Pound Foolish” When It Comes to Affordable Housing

The California Department of Finance (DOF) generally focuses only on the cost to the state of proposed new investments. Just last week they insisted that a common sense proposal by Senator Jim Beall (SB 873) should be limited to only three years because mistaken assumptions by the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) led the DOF to conclude that the change would cost hundreds of thousands of dollars annually. Never mind that when challenged by Read More

Q&A with Collin Tateishi: New Addition to CHPC’s GREEN Team

Last week, Collin Tateishi joined the California Housing Partnership as a Sustainable Housing Policy Analyst. In this new role, Collin manages CHPC’s efforts to increase access to water efficiency and conservation programs for nonprofit affordable housing owners and the low-income tenants they serve. He also supports various energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives by assisting the Green Rental Home Energy Efficiency Network (GREEN). Collin recently received a Master of Urban and Read More

UC Berkeley Study Finds New Affordable Housing Twice As Effective at Combatting Displacement of Lower-Income Families

As tens of thousands of lower-income Californian renters have been displaced from California’s growing job centers over the past five years, a debate has been raging about whether governments should do more to promote investment in affordable housing or instead focus on unshackling the private housing market. The latter theory, promoted by institutions ranging from the Legislative Analysts Office to capital market providers and even a conservative renters’ organization, has been Read More

New Reports Show the Depth of Housing Need in Nine California Counties

May 12, 2016 | Today the California Housing Partnership released reports analyzing housing needs in nine California counties (Alameda, Fresno, Los Angeles, Orange, Sacramento, San Diego, San Joaquin, San Mateo, and Ventura). The reports describe a rapid increase in rents that in combination with a dramatic decline in state and federal funding has led to a shortage of more than a million affordable homes in these nine counties. Finally, the reports Read More

CHPC Hires Research Director, Expands Policy Team

The California Housing Partnership Corporation (CHPC) is excited to announce that we have hired Stacey Murphy as our new Research Director to join Policy Analyst Danielle Mazzella in expanding our ability to support our allies in Sacramento and around the state with high quality analysis of affordable housing needs and solutions. Thanks to a grant from the California Water Foundation, we are also hiring Collin Tateishi as Policy Analyst to support a Read More

Join CHPC at our Housing CA Conference Institutes and Workshops

April 11, 2016 | The 2016 Housing California Conference kicks off tomorrow, April 12  in Sacramento. The California Housing Partnership is  proud that our team of experts will be moderating and speaking in 14 workshops and institutes this year on a variety of topics including affordable housing finance and policy. We hope you will visit one or more of our hosted institutes and workshops listed below.    Pre-Conference Institutes: Tuesday 4/12 1 2:00 – 5:00 Read More

35,785 Affordable Homes in California At-Risk of Conversion

Each year the California Housing Partnership uses data from our Affordable Housing Preservation Clearinghouse to present an annual summary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) subsidized housing at risk of loss of affordability in California. The California Housing Partnership collects and analyzes data from HUD and the state to assess risk of conversion to market rate for HUD-subsidized housing in California based on a number of factors and uses Read More

Using Data to inform Energy and Water Retrofits: Q&A with Tabitha Harrison at Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation (TNDC)

Tenderloin Neighborhood Hood Development Corporation (TNDC) is a nonprofit affordable housing and services provider in San Francisco that owns and operates over 2,500 units of housing at 32 propertes. In recent years, TNDC staff members have ramped up energy and water usage benchmarking efforts throughout their portfolio. Tabitha Harrison joined TNDC as the Sustainability Program Manager in November 2015, where she leads sustainability-related capital improvement projects, sustainability education and outreach programs, Read More

What is Real Cost of Solar in Affordable Housing and Why Should We Care?

As we weigh the value proposition of installing solar PV’s in affordable multifamily rental properties, it is important for housing organizations to have some understanding about what the costs of solar PV are. This can be difficult because there has been very little transparency about the real costs of solar, especially for installations financed through third-party ownership structures, such as Power Purchase Agreements (PPA), and raises a few cautions for affordable Read More

Is 2016 the Year Solar Reaches Low-Income Renters?

Looking back on 2015, several game changing events occurred or were put in play that will enhance solar access and improve the economics of solar investments for affordable housing organizations for years to come. To recap, a big highlight of 2015 was the enactment of the AB 693. AB 693 was introduced by Majority Caucus Leader Susan Eggman (Assembly District 13) and supported by a diverse coalition of environmental justice, solar, Read More

Some Good News From Congress, Finally!

Here in California we have gotten all too used to bad news coming from Congress when it comes to renewing annual funding of the remaining federal affordable housing programs.  Thus, it comes as quite a relief that as Congress scrambles to complete its already delayed work on federal Fiscal Year 2016 funding, that the news is less bad than previously forecast. Lest we get carried away into thinking that the anti-government Read More

Introducing the CHPC News Blog

Welcome to our new blog! Along with our new website, CHPC is launching a blog to allow us to put out more frequent communication with our partners.  We hope you all subscribe to our newsletter, which holds a mix of in-depth case studies, policy updates, and calls to action. Our blog will feature these things as well, but will also be a place for more casual conversation about the affordable housing Read More