City of Lexington offering grants to address the housing crisis

City of Lexington offering grants to address the housing crisis
Published: Dec. 5, 2022 at 10:46 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - As rents continue to rise across Lexington, some groups are now thinking outside the box when it comes to finding a solution to affordable housing.

A handful of developers, community groups and non-profit owners heard about some lesser-known funding opportunities Monday night. The city of Lexington has a little under $5 million in federal funding for grants for those looking for ways to address the housing crisis in the city. From developers focused on moderate and low-income renters to non-profits that serve those in need. Even a few unexpected groups are looking to develop in the city.

“People are unable to live in this city and other places, as well,” said Cardinal Valley Neighborhood Association member Nachie Braga. “So we have to look at other kinds of solutions,” said Cardinal Valley Neighborhood Association member Nachie Braga.

Like the potential for nontraditional developers and lenders, this is where Nachie Braga and his neighborhood association in the Cardinal Valley area come in.

“Rather than partnering with a traditional developer, becoming the developer themselves. Which would allow them to create non-market housing,” Braga said.

That’s housing tailored to low and moderate-income groups. An idea Braga has become enthusiastic about after seeing neighbor after neighbor priced out of their homes, as, he says, big developers with no ties to the area then build in their place.

“People are getting notices. Everyone knows rent is shooting up all over town. But now, occasionally, you even see month-to-month rent increases of $600 and more. Just really outrageous,” Braga said.

This led Braga to the Government Center Monday night to learn about the city’s $4.7 million of grant money available for the fiscal year 2023, specifically to address housing needs.

Braga is interested in a program that provides incentives to develop and support affordable rental housing and home affordability.

In short, it could be a way for an association to buy homes and properties in their neighborhood.

There are three specific types of grants that groups can apply for right now. One is the Community Development Block Grant, which typically helps non-profits. Another is the Emergency Solutions Grant program. The third is the Home Investment Partnership program. The deadline to apply for the grants is January 6.