Real Estate

What Trump's tax cuts mean for affordable housing deals

Housing tax credits can determine if projects get off the ground

Tax reform is one of President Donald Trump’s priorities, after repealing Obamacare, however experts explain the possibility of this overhaul is disrupting the affordable housing industry, according to an article by Laura Kusisto for The Wall Street Journal.

The article explains many investors in the industry are enticed by tax credits earned by setting aside a certain number of units for low-income residents, which can even determine if a project gets off the ground.

However, Trump along with members of Congress proposed reducing the corporate tax rate to 15% or 20%, down from the current 35%. This then takes away the allure to investors who are looking to offset income taxes.

From the article:

Developers said investors are valuing the credit 10% to 20% lower since Election Day. In some cases, investors have walked away, opening up funding gaps in projects already in motion. Because developers already walk a financial tightrope to build low-income housing, some projects are simply failing.

Tax-credit values “have collapsed,” said Stuart Boesky, chief executive of Pembrook Capital Management LLC, a lender specializing in affordable housing. “Some of the deals are just dying…Some of the deals are scrambling around looking for gap grants from state and local housing agencies.”

The article explains the reduction in the credit’s value is already likely to cause a drop of about $1 billion in equity investment in affordable housing in 2017, according to Novogradac & Company, an accounting firm.

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