Massachusetts

MapState News:

August 27, 2020

Regarding EOY Reporting and Ruling 2020-53

A number of people have asked about completing end of year reporting for 2020 in light of the IRS ruling exempting owners from completing recertifications between 4/1/20 and 12/31/20.

Q: We’re still expected to complete initial move-in certifications?

A: Yes.

Q: What should we put in our report if we didn’t complete a recertification in 2020?

A: Nothing. The Report should reflect what really happened. If you didn’t complete a recert between those dates then nothing should be listed.

Q: Do we still have to document Student Status for recerts?

A: No. The ruling was intended to protect tenants and managers/owners/staff from unnecessary interaction. Documenting anything related to eligibility between 4/1/20 and 12/31/20 is unnecessary.

Q: What if a household moved in 6/1/19, isn’t recertified in 2020, and is found to be over the income limit in 2021? Will we be cited for an over income household?

A: It depends on how thorough you were at move in, and how thorough you are at the 2021 recert when you discover they went over income. We recommend you immediately compare the 6/1/19 move in documentation against the 6/1/21 recert. See what changed and try to determine when it changed. You might need to contact income sources and ask them for more details. If you can show the change occurred substantially after move-in, or was truly not anticipated, then no, you will not get cited for an over income household.

Q: What if a household moved in 6/1/19, doesn’t get recertified in 2020, and is over 140% at their recert on 6/121?

A: The 140% rule kicks in on 6/1/21. Just follow the rule starting then.

Q: Do the recerts that weren’t done between 4/1/20 and 12/31/20 need to be completed “retro-actively at a later date?

A: No.

If you have any other questions- please reach out to us.

Ed Clark

Dir. MA monitoring

August 24, 2020

A helpful message from DHCD regarding program requirements

"As the pandemic continues, DHCD wants to provide you with further guidance on income certifications and recertifications at the DHCD-assisted properties that you manage. The Department intends to provide you with maximum flexibility on all matters related to certifications and recertifications. We have prepared the attached chart to help guide you through the remaining months of 2020.

Please note that two of the primary housing development resources that support many of your projects are federal resources: LIHTC and HOME. LIHTC and HOME are subject to guidance and oversight, respectively, from the U.S. Department of the Treasury (the IRS) and from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Both the IRS and HUD have issued guidance that allows DHCD to provide property managers with considerable flexibility, relative to certification and recertification, as the pandemic continues. DHCD intends to provide LIHTC and HOME properties with all the flexibility currently allowed by the federal guidance. If the IRS and/or HUD issues further guidance, we will notify you immediately. In the meantime, we hope that the attached chart will help you understand the guidance, thus far, from the federal agencies as well as the flexibility DHCD is providing relative to the state resources that support your projects.

On the attached chart, we listed many of the state funding programs that support your projects. If your project includes state programs that are not listed, you should assume that DHCD will provide you with the same flexibility that we are providing under the state programs that are listed on the chart.

Please feel free to contact DHCD managers Rebecca Frawley Wachtel or William Cole with any questions. They can be reached at rebecca.frawley@mass.gov and william.cole2@mass.gov, respectively. Thank you for all the work you are doing during this extremely challenging time."

Memo regarding certifications

Income Certification Available Relief

August 5, 2020

The following applies to LIHTC compliance, check with your agency for other programs.

Certifications due between 4/1/20 and 12/31/20 are no longer required. Certifications due in 2021 remain due based on the last completed certification date. Questions can be directed to Ed Clark @ eclark@spectrumlihtc.com

April 7, 2020

Rent Increases During COVID-19 Emergency

In light of the new income and rent limits announced by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on April 1, 2020. DHCD has provided the following guidance to owners and managers of private affordable housing with state financial assistance. For more information and read the guidance provided please click the link below:

DHCD guidance on rent increases during COVID-19 emergency

March 31, 2020

HUD has released the 2020 income limits. They are effective 4/01/20 and must be in use no later than 5/15/20.

To find your 2020 income limits visit: https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/mtsp.html

March 31, 2020

Good Morning,

As a follow-up to the message we sent several weeks ago, we remind you that Spectrum has suspended on-site monitoring at the direction of DHCD.

Many of you have shared your COVID-19 procedures and updates; DHCD is confident that you have implemented temporary measures and accommodations to best protect residents and staff. We remind you that DHCD supports and expects the suspension of in-person recertification meetings, annual unit inspections and group gatherings in common areas. DHCD encourages and expects other reasonable site efforts that facilitate social distancing, site hygiene, and alternative ways to effectively meet resident needs, etc. DHCD urges annual recertification exercises to be delayed until it is mutually convenient and safe (for staff and residents) to collaborate on this administrative task.

You are leaders in providing decent, safe and sanitary housing. Your compassion and creativity are critical to successfully emerging from this extraordinary time. This is not a time for evictions, late rent fees, or rent increases. Please be prepared to provide referrals for necessary supportive services, including VAWA resources and accommodations. Please assure residents, as applicable.

We are partners. If you have questions or concerns, please contact us and/or DHCD.

Thank you.

March 19, 2020

Recertifications during the Pandemic

Property Managers are concerned about failing to get recertifications done during this crisis. We want to try to alleviate some of your concerns and provide some practical advice.

  1. In Massachusetts, SPECTRUM WILL NOT ISSUE AN 8823 IF YOU FAIL TO GET THE RECERTIFICATION DONE BY THE ANNIVERSARY DATE if you make reasonable attempts to do them when they are due. However, A CERTIFICATION MUST BE COMPLETED THIS YEAR.
  2. Communicate with your tenants by phone/email and let them know you’ll be dropping off recertification forms at their door or by mail and ask them to return them the same way.
  3. Contact your tenants via phone/email if the return of the forms is delayed. Make a note to the file of your due diligence.
  4. Once returned, send out your third party verification forms as appropriate.
  5. Resort to non-third party documentation only when necessary.
  6. Get the certification filled out and sent to your tenant in the same manner you sent them the recertification update forms/affidavits. Have them return them the same way.
  7. If some documents end up being more than 120 days old by the time your paperwork is complete, Have the tenant confirm in an affidavit whether or not the information remains accurate. Have them provide supporting documentation if available (pay-stubs, bank statements etc.).
  8. YOU CAN MAKE THE RECERTIFICATION RETRO-ACTIVE if your documentation is late. You can make them effective the date they are signed if you choose. DON’T WORRY if it is technically late. Section 42 requires certifications to be completed annually. The 8823 guide makes it clear the IRS wants them done in line with Section 8 recertification requirements, but it is not written in the law.
  9. DOCUMENT YOUR EFFORTS. SHOW YOUR DUE DILIGENCE. Timelines showing when documents were sent/received, copies of email reminders and narratives to the file can all be used to show reasonable attempts to continue the job of managing your properties.

I hope this helps. Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns. We are all in this together and these circumstances are temporary. Thank you for doing your best.
Ed Clark
Director- MA monitoring
Spectrum Enterprises

February 4, 2020

The IRS has just confirmed the method for calculating the income limits used for Income Averaging Properties in Revenue Ruling 20-04. Details can be viewed HERE

April 24, 2019

HUD has released the 2019 income limits. They are effective 4/24/19 and must be in use no later than 6/8/19.

To find your 2019 income limits visit: https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/mtsp.html

February 25, 2019

On 2/26/19 the Treasury Department will officially publish significant changes to LIHTC monitoring requirements. A copy of the publication can be found HERE

* Advance notice of file reviews and inspections will be limited to no more than 15 days.

* Same day notification of the particular units and files to be reviewed.

* The number of units and files reviewed will increase for properties with 100 or fewer units, decrease for properties with more than 100 units.

The IRS has severely limited the amount of advance notice monitoring agencies are allowed to give LIHTC property owners of upcoming file reviews and physical inspections. This is presumably because some owners have used the advance notice to make deferred repairs and improvements they otherwise would have put off. As a result, the conditions noted at the time of the inspections do not accurately reflect the conditions the tenants experience on a regular basis. The IRS believes giving Owners no more than 15 days advance notice of an inspection and/or file review will help eliminate this gaming of the system. By using same-day notice of which units/files in particular will be reviewed, the IRS believes the results of the reviews will better reflect actual conditions.

These changes present significant logistical issues for Owners, Managers, and Monitoring Agents. Allocating Agencies are required to implement these changes no later than 12/31/2020. You should review your policies and procedures now as these changes can be put in place any time before then.

January 10, 2019


End of Year documentation for 2018 is due no later than March 15.

An email reminder was sent out. If you didn't receive it but would like to going forward, contact Ed Clark eclark@spectrumlihtc.com to be added to the list.

There are no changes to the software or to the Owner Certification at this time.

October 11, 2018

The Social Security Administration has announced the Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) for 2019. The COLA will increase 2.8 percent beginning on December 29, 2018.www.ssa.gov

October 13, 2017

The Social Security Administration has announced the Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) for 2018. The COLA will increase 2.0 percent beginning on December 29, 2017. www.ssa.gov

October 12, 2017

Low-Income Housing Units May be Offered to Displaced Victims of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Other Recent Disasters.

​The IRS has offered guidance for LIHTC properties allowing them to house persons displaced by recent disasters. Please refer to the following link for additional information​:www.irs.gov/newsroom

Click here for a quick guide to housing disaster victims

April 14, 2017

2017 Income Limits have been published! They are effective 4/14/17 and must be in use no later than 5/28/17. Be sure to check the MTSP limit chart to determine which income limits to use for your property.

See this link: https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/mtsp.html

March 13, 2017

VAWA and LIHTC Compliance While LIHTC is considered a covered program under VAWA, legislation has not been enacted to incorporate it into Section 42 of the IRC. There is no enforcement mechanism in place at this time.

Despite this, Spectrum expects LIHTC properties to incorporate compliance with VAWA requirements into their day to day operations.

March 10, 2017

We will post notification here when HUD issues updated income limits.

2016 income limits

Novogradac Rent and Income Calculator


YOUR REQUESTS FOR BLOG TOPICS IS APPRECIATED!

If you have a suggestions, please send them to Edward Clark at eclark@spectrumlihtc.com