MIAMI – In an effort to help residents deal with rising housing costs, Miami-Dade County officials announced the imminent completion of five newly renovated apartment buildings in Historic Overtown.
When complete, the project will provide 28 newly refurbished apartments at below market prices.
“I don’t think $2,000 for a student apartment is affordable,” said Avra Jain, founder of Vagabond Group, a development company that bought the buildings.
“At 80% average median income, I’m not thinking $1,250. We really need $800 rents, don’t we, so Omni CRA, because they gave us the subsidies to renovate these buildings, to renovate them properly, we were able to keep the residents here for those same rents,” Jain added.
The Vagabond Group took out an $812,000 long-term, low-interest loan from the county through its NOAH Loan Program, which provides flexible resources for moderate rehabilitation of single-family homes, duplexes and owner’s small to mid-size rental units in Miami-Dade County. .
The loan is fixed at an interest rate of 0.5% over 20 years and during this period the landlord is not allowed to increase the rental price.
“Rents are guaranteed affordable for this period,” said Michael Liu, director of public housing for Miami-Dade County. “It’s a very unique product that we have. We hope other owners of smaller projects like this will come forward and work with us.”
Owners of the property told CBS4 they expect construction to be completed within the next 6 months.
“The goal here was to keep the current residents of Overtown here. So, number one, we didn’t move any of the residents,” Jain said.
All Miami-Dade County residents in need of rental assistance are encouraged to contact the public housing emergency rent assistance program (ERAP).