Please share with partners and others who may be interested. Thanks!
Please share with partners and others who may be interested. Thanks!
Legislators visit MaineHousing
Committee learns more about agency; goes on tour of housing project, shelter
MaineHousing's Board of Commissioners, Director John Gallagher, and agency directors welcomed members of the Legislature's Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development Committee to MaineHousing on January 17 for an informational session on what we do, who we partner with, and the people we serve under our numerous housing and heating programs.
After the presentation, legislators took tours of Hodgkins School, a former middle school renovated into 47 units of affordable senior housing, which was financed under the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program, and Bread of Life Homeless Shelter and Veterans Housing. MaineHousing thanks our partners at Developers Collaborative, C&C Realty, and Bread of Life Ministries for being gracious hosts.
Pictures of the legislators' visit are on our Facebook page at facebook.com/mainehousing1.
Centralized Section 8 waiting list on its way
MaineHousing and Maine’s local public housing authorities (PHAs) are in the process of implementing a centralized waiting list for applicants seeking rental assistance.  To date, seven PHAs are using the central wait list or are moving their applicant lists onto the central list, and 12 will follow. MaineHousing has the largest wait list of nearly 12,000 applicants.
A centralized waiting list provides one place for applicants to sign up for rental assistance. Also, it gives public housing authorities a better count of how many individuals and families are waiting for Housing Choice Vouchers because it eliminates duplicate names placed on individual PHA lists.
First Home Loan promotion continues
Winter is known as the slow time of year for home buying, but it doesn't stop us from promoting the benefits of First Home Loans. Maine's real estate professionals are the first to work with new home buyers, and can provide them with information about our First Home Loan. To keep realtors informed, we advertise. Above is our advertisement in the winter edition of Maine Realtors magazine
LOW INCOME HOME ENERGY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (LIHEAP)

As of January 19


Total Applications: 39,150

Eligible: 24.055

Pending: 10,279

Denied: 3,385

Other: 1,433

FIRST HOME LOANS

Purchases: 68
As of January 17


Pipeline: 255
As of January 17

2016 MAINE HOME SALES
17,507, up 11.7% from 2015
Median sales price: $189,400, up 4.93% from 2015
NEW RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION PERMIT AUTHORIZATIONS
November 2016 vs. November 2015
Privately Owned Housing Units: 316, up 31%
How this breaks down:
Single family: 280, up 26%
Multifamily: 36, up 90% 
MaineHousing office closure
February 20: Presidents Day
Thank you, Green Key Lenders!
Five of MaineHousing's Green Key Lenders secured more than 55 percent of the First Home Loans during 2016, totaling $68.6 million in volume on
562 of 980 total mortgages.
More than 40 banks and financial institutions statewide -- we call them Green Key Lenders -- offer our First Home Loan program, and we purchase the mortgages from them. Together, we extend the opportunity of homeownership to eligible first-time homebuyers as well as offer $3,500 towards down payment assistance. 
Bangor Savings Bank topped the Green Key Lenders with 148 loans. Regency Mortgage Corp. had 115, Camden National Bank had 103, Residential Mortgage Services had 101, and Machias Savings had 95.
By continuing our solid partnerships, MaineHousing and its Green Key Lenders hope to achieve 1,100 First Home Loans in 2017.
Homebuyers find value in taking a class first
To help first-time homebuyers achieve the dream of homeownership, MaineHousing provides up to $3,500 to cover down payment and closing costs. A requirement of receiving this assistance is that homebuyers complete a homebuyer education class. More people are taking homebuyer ed classes -- even if they do not get a MaineHousing mortgage.

From October 1, 2015 to September 30, 2016, 107 hoMEworks-approved homebuyer education classes were held in Maine and 2,060 people attended. An additional 1,112 people completed hoMEworks-approved homebuyer education classes online. Consumers also have been able to utilize the eHomeAmerica online course.
PILOT PROGRAMS
Two efforts aim to help young adults
achieve self sufficiency
Realizing that young adults who have aged out of the foster care system as well as youth who are homeless may find it difficult to find the right path to a stable home and ultimately self sufficiency, MaineHousing is undertaking two pilot programs in the Bangor and Waterville areas to help them learn the skills to do so. The new programs are:
Building Youth Futures
The goal of Building Youth Futures is to successfully transition homeless young adults who have aged out of the foster care system in the Bangor area towards self sufficiency. Participants have the opportunity to obtain a housing voucher, get help in finding safe housing, complete educational programs, find and maintain employment, and receive other needed services.

The pilot is part of a national U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development endeavor, and is being offered in Maine through a collaboration between MaineHousing, the Office of Child and Family Services at the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, and Shaw House Youth Shelter and Community Care.

Pathway to Opportunity

MaineHousing is partnering with the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, Good Will-Hinckley, and shelter providers to incorporate TANF and other youth programs, emergency shelter navigator services, and the College Step-Up program to assist young adults up to age 25 in their transition from homelessness. Participants will be guided by advisors and navigators who will offer supportive services to help them learn career preparation, financial management, and how to succeed academically.
Agency gets $1.08M in rapid re-housing funds

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in January awarded $1.08 million to MaineHousing’s Homeless Initiatives Department for new and renewal projects as a result of the 2016 Continuum of Care (CoC) competition.

Almost $400,000 of the funds will go towards a new Maine rapid re-housing program that will provide tenant-based rental assistance for up to 24 months to clients who are currently being served in our Emergency Shelter and Housing Assistance Program, and will provide housing stability services from program navigators. We anticipate this program will assist at least 80 individuals.
A WCSH-6 reporter followed volunteers conducting the Point In Time survey in Portland. Here's the story of how the volunteers did more than count people living outside there.
Storm doesn't stop Point in Time survey

A nor'easter did not stop the annual Point in Time (PIT) survey from taking place statewide on the night of January 24. Extended outreach continued to unsheltered individuals through January 27.
MaineHousing's Homeless Initiatives Department works with staff at homeless shelters and volunteers on how the survey is to be conducted. Thank you!
The PIT is required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and is an effort to gather data on homelessness on one particular night nationwide, including chronic homelessness, homelessness among individuals, veterans, families with children, and youth.
The information collected in the PIT will help MaineHousing and individual communities develop a better understanding of the size and scope of homelessness, address immediate needs, and develop long-range plans to end and prevent homelessness in Maine.
Unfortunately, homelessness occurs throughout the year and not just on one night. In 2016, 2,585 individuals were assisted in 40 shelters statewide.
Our Programs By The Numbers
In 2016, MaineHousing stayed true to its mission to assist Maine people in obtaining and maintaining quality affordable housing and services suitable to their needs. We do this through financing affordable housing development, providing First Home Loans to first-time homebuyers and military, and serving lower-income families with their housing and heating needs. Here's a look at our accomplishments!