It Takes A Village: Behind the Scenes of Affordable Housing Development at NCHI


Have you ever wondered how Northside funds our housing development projects? In short, the work we do is the result of federal, state, and local government partnerships combined with generous help from individual, foundation, and corporate supporters. To help residents and community members understand the work we do at NCHI, we’ve made a couple of handy infographics that lay out how we use common sources of funding for affordable housing development. Keep reading for a more detailed breakdown of how these programs help us serve the community!

Federal Programs

Federal programs that support affordable housing in neighborhoods like the Ville generally go through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The largest form of federal assistance for affordable housing is the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), which as of 2014 has helped finance the development of 2.4 million rental units for low-income households. Northside receives federal funds, including LIHTC and Historic Tax Credits, through the Missouri Housing Development Commission (MHDC). These sources of funding not only develop affordable housing in the Ville, but also ensure that the homes we build sustain the architectural heritage of our area. Other programs include Tax Credit Replacement Funds, a temporary program that ensured continued investment in affordable housing development during the Great Recession, and block grants like the HOME Investment Partnership Program.

State Programs

Oftentimes federal programs are not enough to fully fund a development project. In these cases, state programs are critical to supplementing project costs. State funding can take many forms, two common examples being Missouri’s version of LIHTC and Historic Tax Credits. Sometimes states will also have their own community development programs separate from federal complements. An example for Northside is our recent award of Neighborhood Assistance Program tax credits through MHDC.

St. Louis City Programs

Local programs are as important to our work as federal and state funding. One important source of support is the city’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund (AHTF), a program that awards loans and grants to nonprofit developers of affordable housing. The AHTF helps Northside fill in critical gaps in cases where federal and/or state money is not enough to completely fund a project. Our most recent project, St. Ferdinand Homes II, received $250,000 in AHTF funds that will allow us to build 43 mixed-income town homes and apartments around St. Ferdinand and North Sarah. Another important source of support from the City of St. Louis is the Community Development Administration (CDA), which promotes the construction of new and rehab affordable housing and other community development programs to promote neighborhood stabilization and growth. CDA partners with Northside on a number of our projects. The most recent one was HOME funds awarded to St. Ferdinand Homes II.

Building affordable housing requires investment from a large network of sources at all levels of government. In addition to creating the physical spaces for people to live, our work at Northside also includes community-level work with residents and neighbors. Funding this work also involves building relationships with public and private partners, and couldn’t happen without the support of local businesses, organizations, and donors. Whether it’s financial education classes for residents or working with fellow neighborhood service providers in the Ville Collaborative, community development grants and partnerships with local banks help provide the support we need to sustainably serve the community. Last but not least, our day-to-day operations wouldn’t happen without donations that bolster the behind the scenes work that makes what we do everyday possible.

We hope you enjoyed this peek into our world!