Community Based Housing (CBH)

The Community Based Housing (CBH) program provides funding for the development of integrated housing for people with disabilities, including elders, with priority for individuals who are in institution or nursing facilities or risk of institutionalization

Program Description

The CBH Program provides funding for the development of integrated housing for people with disabilities, with priority for individuals who are in institutions or nursing facilities or at risk of institutionalization.

Eligible Borrowers

For profit developers, non-profit developers, and local housing authorities and municipalities in cooperation with for- profit or non-profit developers are eligible to apply for CBH funds.

Eligible Activities

CBH funds can be used for the acquisition and/or rehabilitation of existing structures for rental use, or for the new construction of rental projects. All units receiving CBH assistance must be occupied by Persons Certified Eligible by the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) with incomes no greater than 80% of the area median income.

Eligible Populations

The CBH Program excludes clients of the DMH and DDS (who may access housing financed through the FCF program), but includes many other people with disabilities who are institutionalized or at risk of institutionalization. In order to be eligible for CBH, a person must have a physical or mental impairment of a permanent or long and continuous duration that substantially limits one or more major life activities. The physical or mental impairment must be medically demonstrable by acceptable clinical and laboratory diagnostic techniques.

Eligible populations include adults with a broad range of disabilities including mobility impairments, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, epilepsy, HIV/AIDS, brain or spinal cord injuries, sensory disabilities, emotional disabilities and cognitive disabilities.

Eligible Housing Types

Projects seeking CBH funds must be certified by the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission, and priority will be given to projects that provide integrated housing that includes several CBH units within a larger rental building or development. Ideally, no more than 15% of the units should be set-aside for people with disabilities.

Accessibility

The CBH Program does not require all units to be fully accessible. However, accessibility through visitability is strongly encouraged. Visitability includes accessible front doors to units, accessible circulation to public spaces and amenities within a building, and an accessible bathroom on the first floor of a building. Please see the CBH Design guidelines here and additional code information here.

Maximum Loan Amount

DHCD will award no more than 50% of total project development costs per CBH unit, with a recommended limit of $750,000 per project.

Rate and Term of Loan

In general CBH Loans are structured as 30-year deferred payment loans at 0% interest, with ten-year extensions available at DHCD’s discretion. DHCD reserves the right to structure any CBH loan with an interest rate above 0%. Loans are subject to deed restrictions and title transfer agreements as provided for in loan documents, including a promissory note, mortgage and use restriction.

Selection Criteria

Projects must be approved by MRC, and underwritten for feasibility by DHCD's technical assistance partner, the Community Development Economic Assistance Corporation (CEDAC). Factors for consideration will include:

  • strength of overall concept
  • strength of development team
  • demonstrated need for project in the target neighborhood
  • suitable site and design
  • appropriate scope of rehabilitation or construction
  • appropriate total development cost for properties included in proposal
    financial viability of the project
  • evidence of readiness to proceed
  • evidence of satisfactory progress on projects previously funded with DHCD resources
  • certification in accordance with Executive Order 418

incorporation of sustainable development

Guidelines, Forms, Policies and Information

CBH Guidelines

CBH Frequently Asked Questions

CBH Design Guidelines

State and Federal Codes

How to Apply

DHCD makes CBH funding available through a Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA). Applicants must submit an application for funding using the Department’s Mass One Stop+ web-based application.

Mass OneStop+

Winter 2018 NOFA

Additional Resources

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