Lending Program Protects Affordable Housing Units in Halifax, Dartmouth

The Province is helping the North End Community Health Centre preserve two affordable housing properties for up to 32 Nova Scotians in need of supportive housing.

“Everyone deserves a safe, affordable place to call home,” said Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister John Lohr. “We’re pleased to help the North End Community Health Centre acquire these rental properties so that the residents can continue to live in a place they know and where they can access the community supports and services they may need.”

Through the new Community Housing Acquisition Program, the government provided the centre a $2.45-million low-interest mortgage to purchase a 20-unit building in north-end Halifax and a $570,000 low-interest mortgage to purchase a 12-unit property in Dartmouth.

The Province is also funding new supportive housing services. The type of services will vary depending on residents’ needs but could include support for maintaining the unit; referrals to harm reduction programs and mental health and addictions services; and life stability and system navigation supports.

The Department of Community Services is providing $209,000 in annual funding for operations, on-site supports and services for the building in Halifax and $96,000 for the Dartmouth property.

These are the third and fourth projects acquired by a non-profit organization through the acquisition program.

“This long-term commitment to providing services at these buildings will help residents maintain their independence. The service provider will provide stability and support while developing a sense of home and community for the residents.”
     – Karla MacFarlane, Minister of Community Services

“The North End Community Health Centre is pleased to partner with the Province to purchase two new buildings that will provide supportive housing to those who would otherwise be experiencing homelessness. This collaborative effort will ensure 32 people not only have a roof over their heads but also receive the supports they need to remain housed in a dignified way.”
     – Marie-France LeBlanc, CEO, North End Community Health Centre

Quick Facts:
— non-profit organizations and other community housing providers can access up to $10 million in repayable loans to support the purchase of existing rental units through the Community Housing Acquisition Program
— the program fulfills the Nova Scotia Affordable Housing Commission’s recommendation to help non-profits finance the acquisition of rental properties at risk of being converted into higher-end developments
— the Housing Trust of Nova Scotia was the first organization to receive a low-interest mortgage through the program and acquired nearly 300 affordable rental units in Halifax Regional Municipality
— the Department of Community Services has a supportive housing mandate, to ensure Nova Scotians can maintain housing and access services and supports as a way to address and prevent homelessness

Source: Release

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