BOSTON –August 21, 2020–MassHousing has provided $27.3 million in affordable housing financing to an affiliate of Hebrew SeniorLife to renovate and extend the affordability for lower-income senior citizens at the 160-unit Simon C. Fireman Community in Randolph.
"The residents who live at the Fireman Community are seniors who share many experiences and interests, and we are very pleased that life will continue as usual for them long into the future," said MassHousing Executive Director Chrystal Kornegay. "Hebrew SeniorLife has for decades been on the cutting edge of promoting independence for seniors, while also providing superior housing and services for their residents. We were pleased to help them invest in the Fireman Community and preserve housing affordability for their residents."
"We are thrilled to extend our partnership with MassHousing and Rockport Mortgage Corporation to refinance our Simon C. Fireman Community," said Lou Woolf, President and CEO, Hebrew SeniorLife. "Proceeds from the refinance will allow us to significantly update the physical condition of the property, while continuing to offer residents a robust resident services package, including HSL’s widely recognized Right Care, Right Place, Right Time (R3) initiative.
"R3 embeds wellness teams in affordable housing and builds an 'eyes-on' approach, where well-trained housing staff share observations and contribute to care coordination efforts," Woolf continued. "The R3 wellness teams serve as an additional link between housing and health care to most effectively support residents where they spend most of their time, helping them achieve improved outcomes and live independently in their homes for as long as possible."
Hebrew SeniorLife refinanced the property through MassHousing’s Multifamily Accelerated Processing (MAP)/Ginnie Mae Joint Venture Initiative with lender partner Rockport Mortgage Corporation. MassHousing offers the MAP/Ginnie Mae loan program to the owners of rental housing through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). HUD provides expedited Federal Housing Administration (FHA) insurance approvals through the MAP program. MassHousing surpassed $1 billion in cumulative MAP lending earlier this year, and the Agency has built the largest MAP lending program of any state housing finance agency in the nation.
The combination of FHA insurance and a Ginnie Mae guarantee enables borrowers to access taxable mortgage financing with lower interest rates, while preserving and extending affordability for hundreds of low-income individuals, senior citizens and families. MassHousing is providing Hebrew SeniorLife with a $27.3 million, 35-year permanent loan.
"Rockport Mortgage is very pleased to partner once again with Hebrew SeniorLife and MassHousing to preserve, through modernization and efficiency of building systems, this very important senior housing asset," noted Dan Lyons, Managing Partner and President of Rockport Mortgage Corporation. "Hebrew SeniorLife has been providing quality housing and healthcare for Massachusetts senior citizens for more than a century. We’re honored to play even a small role in assisting them with their critically important mission."
Developed in 1985 as part of HUD's Section 202 program, the 160 apartments at the Fireman Community are contained in a single, three-story building at 640 North Main St., in Randolph.
There are 40 studio apartments, 119 one-bedroom apartments, and one two-bedroom apartment.
All the apartments, with the exception of one, are subsidized by a federal Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment contract, which will be extended for 20 years when the current contract expires in 2024, ensuring affordability at the Fireman Community for at least 24 years. One unit is market rate.
The property will also receive approximately $6 million in renovation work, including upgrading the accessibility of 10 units; new cabinets, countertops, shelving, flooring, and microwaves in all units; new stoves in units with original kitchens; plumbing, electrical, fire alarm, and sprinkler system upgrades; new windows and air conditioners; installation of a building-wide Wi-Fi system; and the cleaning of all unit exhaust ductwork.
South Coast Improvement Company is the general contractor.
MassHousing has financed two rental housing communities in Randolph totaling 264 housing units and $47.2 million in financing. The Agency has additionally financed 674 home mortgage loans in Randolph, totaling $109 million in financing.
About MassHousing's MAP/Ginnie Mae Initiative
MassHousing has partnered with three well-known and experienced MAP lenders CBRE, Capital One and Rockport Mortgage Corporation. The MAP lender prepares the submission of each transaction for HUD's approval. MassHousing then closes the new loan and issues a Ginnie Mae Mortgage Backed Security (MBS), which has consistently provided the multifamily mortgage industry its most competitive long-term, taxable interest rates.
With each MAP/Ginnie Mae loan, MassHousing continues as the mortgagee of record and becomes a Ginnie Mae servicer. This ensures affordability, as each completed transaction will require the property owner to rent at least 20% of the units to those earning less than 80% of the area median income. Affordability at many properties could be at risk were MassHousing unable to offer this product, as owners could refinance with other lenders who do not require affordability restrictions.
About Hebrew SeniorLife
Hebrew SeniorLife is a national senior services leader dedicated to rethinking, researching, and redefining the possibilities of aging. As New England’s largest nonprofit provider of senior health care and living communities, and the only one affiliated with Harvard Medical School, HSL cares for more than 3,000 seniors a day across six campuses throughout Greater Boston. Our locations include: Hebrew Rehabilitation Center, Boston and Dedham; NewBridge on the Charles, Dedham; Orchard Cove, Canton; Simon C. Fireman Community, Randolph; Center Communities of Brookline, Brookline; and Jack Satter House, Revere. Founded in 1903, HSL also conducts influential research into aging and trains more than 1,000 students in geriatric care each year. Visit www.hebrewseniorlife.org, read our blog, or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
About Rockport Mortgage Corporation
Rockport Mortgage Corporation is a privately owned commercial mortgage banking firm founded in 1992 and located on the North Shore of Boston. Rockport specializes in providing FHA-insured loans to market-rate, affordable and senior housing communities and healthcare facilities through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and has been approved under HUD’s Multifamily Accelerated Processing (MAP) Program since the program inception in 2001. The Rockport team works collectively to navigate the complexities of FHA/HUD-insured finance programs, developing strategic solutions to meet the needs of our clients. For more information about Rockport Mortgage Corporation please visit www.rockportmortgage.com.
MassHousing (The Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency) is an independent, quasi-public agency created in 1966 and charged with providing financing for affordable housing in Massachusetts. The Agency raises capital by selling bonds and lends the proceeds to low- and moderate-income homebuyers and homeowners, and to developers who build or preserve affordable and/or mixed-income rental housing. MassHousing does not use taxpayer dollars to sustain its operations, although it administers some publicly funded programs on behalf of the Commonwealth. Since its inception, MassHousing has provided more than $25 billion for affordable housing. For more information, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.