The Real Deal New York

City’s housing lottery rules set to change

Developers will now need to have their marketing plan approved by the city

October 04, 2016 09:53AM

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 16: Public Advocate and New York City Mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio speaks to voters at a subway station in Brooklyn on August 16, 2013 in New York City. In the latest polls, de Blasio is in a tie with fellow candidate Christine Quinn. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Bill de Blasio

City officials today will announce new rules for the affordable housing lottery, and it looks like developers are going to have make some adjustments.

The new measures — which the city says were developed following dialogue with community and housing advocates — will tighten the guidelines requiring anyone who gets an affordable apartment to keep it as their primary residence. An applicant’s credit score or history in the housing court will no longer be able to be used as the sole reason for denying housing. There are also new rules requiring interview locations to be accessible and clearly marked, and for the interviewers to provide interpretation services.

A key change appears to be a requirement that developers submit marketing plans to the city for approval. They’ll be required to do so roughly seven months before construction is complete on a new development, DNAinfo reported.

The changes to the “Housing Connect” lottery program, launched in 2013, are part of several anticipated initiatives from Bill de Blasio’s administration aimed at preserving 120,000 affordable units and creating 80,000 new apartments over 10 years.

Other changes include reforms to the appeal process for people who think they were wrongfully denied housing.

“Disqualifications based solely on credit history, or because a tenant fought his or her rights in housing court, have no place in our affordable housing programs,” de Blasio said in a statement. “These key improvements to the rules level the playing field and give every household the chance a house within their means.”

There are tens of thousands of New Yorkers vying for affordable housing spots across the city, and chances of winning those spots are extremely slim.

In July, the city claimed it had financed the creation and preservation of nearly 53,000 units of low-to-moderate-income housing since de Blasio took office.  [DNAinfo]Miriam Hall

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