Thanks to a new partnership between The Municipal Housing Authority for the City of Yonkers (MHACY) and Westhab, low-income residents in the City of Yonkers will benefit from a rental subsidy that will reduce their rents and provide housing stability, while also allowing Westhab to invest in its existing affordable housing stock.
MHACY is working to help residents in affordable buildings run by Westhab by awarding the organization Section 8 housing vouchers that will help subsidize rents for low-income residents in their buildings. MHACY administers the vouchers provided by the Department of Housing and Urban Development which help subsidize rental units in multifamily residential buildings for income-qualifying tenants.
“The goal is to preserve affordable housing for people who may be at risk of losing their homes because their incomes are too low to afford housing in our area,’’ said Wilson Kimball, President and CEO of MHACY. “Our partnership with Westhab makes sense on so many levels: It helps support low-income residents as well as a nonprofit organization that does such valuable work in our community.”
Andrew Germansky, Senior Vice President of Real Estate at Westhab, commented, “We appreciate this opportunity to grow our partnership with MHACY and advance our shared goal of providing quality housing that is affordable to all members of our community. These vouchers will support our tenants and stabilize Westhab’s older housing portfolio in Yonkers for the long-term.”
Westhab will receive approximately 124 Section 8 vouchers at nine of Westhab’s properties in Yonkers including those on Knowles Street, Livingston Avenue,
Waverly Street, Elm Street, Lawrence Street, and Bruce Avenue. The vouchers will ensure that tenants pay no more than 30% of their income towards rent.
Westhab, founded in 1981 to address the affordable housing crisis in Westchester, develops affordable and supportive housing, operates homeless shelters, and provides youth programs and employment services in Westchester and New York City.
Germansky said the vouchers will increase income at the properties while reducing rent for many of the residents. The additional source of income would have the added benefit of allowing Westhab to hire additional staff and make improvements to the buildings, benefitting the organization as well as the tenants.
The partnership with Westhab is part of a larger effort by MHACY and Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano to expand affordable housing opportunities in the city.
This summer Spano, Kimball, and MHACY Board Chairman James Landy announced that they were issuing a request for proposals from building owners who were interested in participating in the Section 8 Housing program.
“Housing is key to the vitality of any city. In addition to all the new market-rate housing that is going up, we have renovated our public housing stock and are now making more affordable housing available through the use of Section 8 vouchers in partnership with building owners,’’ said Kimball. “This three-prong approach ensures that we provide a full spectrum of housing, and renew our commitment to provide safe, affordable housing for working families.’’