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ON SITE WITH ABODE


“On Site with ABODE” is a feature that highlights a randomly selected member property each month. This month, ABODE recognizes four of the 2012 Honors Award property winners. In the coming months, “On Site with ABODE” will visit each winning property and give you a closer look, so stay tuned.


Cornerstone Award Company: New Hope Housing Properties: 2424 Sakowitz, 1414 Congress, Brays Crossing, Canal Street Apartments and Hamilton Street Residence Class: A/affordable/single-room occupancy Units: 634 Web: www.newhopehousing.com HAA is proud to honor New Hope Housing, one of several organizations in the Houston area working to provide sup- portive housing to the working poor and others in need, with its first Cornerstone award for outstanding service to the industry and the community. New Hope provides not temporary shelter but permanent supportive housing and is the state’s largest provider of single-room occupancy hous- ing, with five properties that offer all-bills-paid units for less than $500 per month, as well as on-site resident services such as training programs, recreational opportunities and transportation assistance. “The difference between New Hope properties and other


SRO properties is that our housing is not as specialized,” said Joy Horak-Brown, New Hope’s executive director. “You aren’t required to be homeless to live at a New Hope prop- erty. You don’t have to have a disability or be in recovery. You literally can simply be making minimum wage and be unable to afford market rate rent. Our properties are avail- able to serve a wide variety of citizens.” New Hope is an affordable housing developer that relies


on a blend of public and private funds. Its not-for-profit business model relies on a combination of private donors and public money – HUD funds and Low-Income Housing Tax Credits – to develop its properties at low cost. The company operates as a zero-debt organization. All equity is raised prior to breaking ground, so as soon as a property reaches stabilization it becomes self-sustaining, its own rental revenues supporting operations and providing a reserve for future maintenance. “This enables us to charge the lowest rent possible,”


said Horak-Brown. “If we carried debt, we would have to charge our residents more, and that is not our purpose. Our core purpose is to help stabilize lives through afford- able housing, to serve our residents, and not to make a profit. All of our funds go straight back into our mission, into developing additional housing and to maintaining the properties.”


Story by RACHEL ZOCH, HAA Staff Large photo by MARK HIEBERT, Hiebert Photography Small photos courtesy of NEW HOPE HOUSING


56 AUGUST 2012 ABODE


Cornerstone


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