State Agencies Provide Paths to Homeownership
Published : Wednesday, April 19, 2017 | 3:29 PM
Some tenants along the formerly proposed State Route 710-North corridor moved closer to home ownership today as the first deadline closed in the Affordable Sales Program.
The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) collaborated with sister agencies to design the Program, which returns state-owned property to the communities of Pasadena, South Pasadena and Los Angeles and allows tenants the opportunity to become homeowners.
Caltrans said in a press release that it received nearly 90 responses on the 42 properties for sale, and the Department is currently reviewing submittals for eligibility.
“This is good news not only for these individuals who may have their first opportunity at affordable home ownership, but for the entire community,” said Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty.
Caltrans notified the potential buyers last December that they may be eligible to purchase the property they were living in, with low and moderate income tenants given first priority under the law known as the Roberti Bill.
The Affordable Sales Program further allows Housing Related Entities to purchase should tenants not wish to buy the property themselves. Housing entities must either rent or sell first to current residents, regardless of income. Any equity gained upon subsequent sales returns to an Affordable Housing Trust Account for purposes of expanding affordable housing in Pasadena, South Pasadena, Alhambra and La Cañada-Flintridge.
These first 42 properties are among 460 parcels currently owned by Caltrans, that were once purchased for the State Route 710 corridor extension project.
“We are pleased to be able to provide and expand affordable housing opportunities for this community,” said Caltrans District 7 Director Carrie Bowen.
Caltrans has contracted with Veterans Realty Group, a real estate consulting company, to facilitate the transactions and guide occupants through the purchase process. In January the consultant held homebuyer education workshops for occupants in Phase 1, and have subsequently met with every one of the occupied to walk them through their options. A special mortgage product has been established by the California Housing Finance Agency to assist lower income tenants purchase at affordable prices and gain limited appreciation.
The first phase of sales will take approximately one year to complete. The remaining properties are anticipated to begin sales in the second phase beginning in late 2017.
The California Transportation Commission must approve sales of state owned property. More information is available at http://www.dot.ca.gov/d7/business/710sales/.