Low vacancy rates and high rental costs are contributing to an increase in lengths of stay at local shelters serving individuals and families experiencing homelessness. Subsequently, shelters are routinely at or over capacity, resulting in longer wait lists for those seeking emergency shelter and a greater number of households remaining unsheltered or unstably housed.
Many individuals and families caught in this shelter bottleneck are ready to move on to permanent housing but are unable to find affordable housing options or landlords willing to accept rental assistance.
What is AHIP?
The Affordable Housing Incentive Program (AHIP) is an initiative of Granite United Way and the Home for All Coalition that serves three NH communities: the Seacoast (Rockingham and Strafford Counties), Belknap County, and Merrimack County. AHIP addresses the immediate needs related to homelessness and the shortage of affordable housing, by partnering with local landlords to increase affordability within existing housing stock and reduce barriers to participating in assisted housing programs, like the Housing Choice Voucher Program.
This results in less time a rental unit is vacant, opens the door to permanent, housing for households experiencing or at risk of homelessness, and helps ensure tenants are connected to supportive services to help prevent returns to homelessness or housing instability
Why was AHIP Created?
AHIP is a program that was created to bring together two key stakeholders - landlords and service providers - to help move individuals out of homelessness and remain stably housed. AHIP offers a comprehensive slate of financial incentives for landlords to keep rents affordable and encourage them to accept Housing Choice Vouchers and other forms of rental assistance. In line with Home for All’s mission, AHIP helps ensure that everyone in this program is housed with dignity. AHIP tenants are moving into clean, maintained units and a place that anyone - regardless of their circumstance - can proudly call home. In addition, AHIP offers financial assistance to partner shelter and social service agencies to provide 12 months of housing stability supportive services to help ensure even the most vulnerable individuals can maintain their housing.
The Impact of AHIP on our Communities
We believe that individuals, families, and communities are safer, healthier, and stronger when everyone has a home. AHIP provides access to affordable housing options that are essential for communities to thrive. In addition, we believe, the best way to combat homelessness is to prevent it from happening in the first place. AHIP ensures that tenants are connected to necessary support as they transition from homelessness to housing to ensure long-term housing stability and reduce the likelihood of returning to homelessness. The economic and social costs of homelessness far outweigh the investment in preventing it.
- Landlord Benefits: A comprehensive slate of incentives to keep rents affordable and reduce barriers to renting to tenants with Housing Choice Vouchers or other forms of rental assistance.
- Agency Partner Benefits: Access to off-market units for clients and financial assistance to provide 12 months of housing stability supportive services to help maintain housing and prevent eviction.
- Tenant Benefits: AHIP helps ensure that everyone in this program is housed with dignity. AHIP tenants are moving into clean, maintained units and a place that anyone - regardless of their circumstance - can proudly call home. AHIP also provides tenants with 12 months of housing stability supportive services to help them become connected to resources in their community to ensure a successful tenancy.
AHIP Tenant Benefits
AHIP helps ensure that tenants are moving into clean, maintained units and a place that anyone - regardless of their circumstance - can proudly call home. AHIP also offers financial assistance to partner social service agencies for providing 12 months of housing stability and supportive services to tenants housed in AHIP units to help ensure that even the most vulnerable individuals can maintain their housing.
AHIP Landlord Partner Supports
Understanding and mitigating the concerns of landlords is a critical part of the Affordable Housing Incentive Program (AHIP). AHIP's menu of landlord incentives removes barriers to providing affordable housing, offsets missed rental income due to periods of vacancy or repairs required to meet HUD’s housing standards and add “voucher-ready,” units to the communities we serve. We all play an important role in solving the issues of homelessness and housing instability. AHIP partners with landlords and property managers to create pathways to affordable housing for some of the most vulnerable members of our communities. By providing safe and affordable housing, you are becoming part of the solution.
- Streamlined Process: AHIP helps make affordable housing easier to navigate. We simplify the process and provide support to landlords and property managers from the application process through the length of tenancy.
- Ready Tenants: Our agency partners work closely with all prospective tenants to prepare them for the responsibilities of being a renter to ensure a smooth transition into housing and successful tenancy.
- Housing Stability Supportive Services: We partner with over 20 social service agencies to provide ongoing and individualized housing stability supportive services to all tenants placed in AHIP units. These agencies have dedicated housing stability case managers who meet with tenants and their families regularly and serve as a resource and point of contact for the landlord if any issues arise during the first year of tenancy.
- Sign-On Bonus: A one-time, per-unit sign-on bonus equivalent to one month's rent is awarded to AHIP landlords who participate in the program. Funds are disbursed following the execution of a 12-month lease and occupancy of the unit.
- Grant Repair Program for Housing Choice Voucher Units: Grants of up to $3700 are available for Housing Choice Voucher units that fail the initial Housing Quality Standards (HQS) code inspection. Property owners/landlords are required to cover the first $300 in expenditures, with grant funds kicking in after that.
- Eviction Prevention Payment: A 12-month eviction prevention payment per unit to landlords who are willing to engage with us and work toward implementing trauma-informed housing practices and opt-in to a receive monthly resources and upcoming training opportunities geared toward helping housing providers better understand and navigate the needs of households facing barriers to housing stability.
Interested in enrolling a unit into the Affordable Housing Incentive Program?
If you are a landlord looking to enroll a unit in AHIP click the link below for a brief series of questions regarding the unit you wish to enroll in this program. Upon completion, a representative from Home for All will reach out to you to discuss the unit further and review important program requirements. If your unit is selected to be part of the program, a representative from Home for All will discuss next steps.