Affordable Housing and Community Development
At Nutter, we take great pride in our clients’ community development projects. These developments catalyze economic growth, provide safe, affordable housing for people of all incomes and abilities, and preserve prominent, historically-significant properties.
None of these projects happens without meaningful public and governmental support. We are committed to helping our clients make the most of the benefits of public and governmental support because we share our clients’ community development goals. We want our clients to succeed in doing good.
What We Do
Support takes many forms. Our Affordable Housing and Community Development practice group is comprised of attorneys who can work in a multidisciplinary approach designed to completely advise developers on:
- Acquiring real estate by sales contracts, options, or leases
- Identifying permitting issues and obtaining permits to develop and use property
- Identifying public interest issues and obtaining municipal and state government approvals
- Structuring and documenting debt financing, including government-backed debt financing, and tax-exempt bond financing
- Tax credits: seeking allocations, qualifying the project, evaluating tax credit investor bids, structuring tax credit equity financing, and structuring and implementing investors’ redemptions at the end of the compliance period
- Creating optimal entity structures
- Forming entities and drafting organizing documents
We offer the legal services that you need to plan and develop your community development project, all under one roof: one team in one firm.
Affordable housing projects frequently rely on government-backed debt financings through HUD, Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, and USDA. We can help developers with those financings. Members of our team can assist with government grant/soft money loans through HUD’s HOME and National Housing Trust Fund programs, the Federal Home Loan Bank’s AHP program, CDBG grants and loans, as well as several state and local government-supported financing programs.
We also can advise developers on projects qualifying for federal and state low-income housing tax credits. Members of our team have advised developers on applying for tax credit allocations, structuring bond and related commercial financing, and in identifying and resolving issues early. We aim to lay a path far ahead for a smooth closing process that achieves our clients’ goals.
We understand the federal and state historic tax credit programs, the sensitivities of State Historic Preservation officers, National Park Service, traps for the unwary in development timing, development expenditure planning, and structuring debt financing, guaranties, and equity financing for the project. We are comfortable advising seasoned rehabilitation developers, as well as developers who are taking on their first rehabilitation project.
New Markets Financings
New Markets Tax Credits involve several parties and a large volume of contracts (even for tax credit transactions). We know how to manage this paper flow and what to expect from each of the players. In addition, we can help business owners understand whether that business can qualify for New Markets financing, and the benefits and burdens associated with that financing. We also have advised business at the end of the seven-year compliance period with resulting refinancing and tax issues.
Qualified Opportunity Zones
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 created a new tax incentive program, which provides an incentive to invest in business property located in economically distressed communities. Nutter has thoroughly studied the Qualified Opportunity Zone statute, proposed regulations, and the final regulations issued in early 2020. The Qualified Opportunity Zone program can be beneficial for certain projects. We can help developers understand whether the program would work best for their projects.