We help public agencies leverage financing to make affordable housing and communities a reality.
Our purpose is to provide solutions
in a timely, responsible, substantive & collaborative way.
Connecticut Housing Finance Authority
Creation of Multifamily Housing Revenue Bond Program
Housing Authority of the
City of Los Angeles
Managing & Deploying a Zero Participation Loan Strategy
Philadelphia Housing Authority
Case Studies In Detail.
In collaboration with California Forward, HR&A Advisors, and California Community Builders, CSG Advisors helped design what will be by far the largest shared-appreciation second-mortgage program in the country.
California Dream for All, as the program is now known, was funded with $500 million for the first year, increasing to $1 billion a year for the next 10 years.
Homeownership is increasingly unattainable for Californians state-wide, with home prices across the state far exceeding the national average and recent dramatic increases in the median sales price of $100,000 to $500,000+. This problem is particularly harmful for first-time, first-generation homebuyers—many of whom are members of BIPOC communities who have historically faced discrimination in the home buying process.
The solution CSG helped develop is not a housing subsidy program, but rather a state revolving investment fund, designed so that repayments will help future borrowers even—and especially—if prices continue to rise dramatically. The program’s shared appreciation loans are expected to average approximately 17% of the purchase price of a home, with borrowers using normal 80% Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac first mortgages funded by CalHFA. This program was based on successful shared appreciation programs CSG designed for San Francisco in 1982 and for Alameda County (CA) in 2016.
An innovative feature is to subordinate even the principal repayment of the second mortgage to the borrower’s original down payment. This protects the borrower if prices drop and help maintain the borrower’s incentive to continue making mortgage payments even if that occurs.
An essential purpose of the state’s investment is to help build household wealth, especially for those who have historically been discriminated against. We, therefore, tested the shared appreciation approach against other alternatives, such as low-rate deferred down payment assistance loans or forgivable loans, and found that it helped generate far more total borrower household wealth over the next 40 years.
- Combat a statewide homeownership challenge.
- Expand homeownership opportunities for future generations of first-time, first-generation, and BIPOC homebuyers.
- Create opportunities for a projected 157,400 families to generate household wealth 19 times the state’s net investment over the next 40 years with access to shared appreciation provided by the state.
CSG helped create a large-scale, long-term, self-sustaining program that will expand homeownership opportunities for thousands of California families for many years to come.
STRATEGIC CAPITAL ANALYSIS
This work resulted in substantial new resources for down payment assistance, enabling the HFA to restore its (recently reduced) maximum loan limits and increase single-family production.
CSG’s Focus on Long-Term Sustainability
Connecticut Housing asked CSG to evaluate its overall financial structure, whereby net income from all activities flowed through its primary bond indenture to redeem bonds, and to outline an approach that would give Connecticut Housing greater ability to invest in housing initiatives.
The key questions were how are Authority decisions impacting its future net income, and how can the agency more flexibly utilize that net income while maintaining its long-term financial soundness.
We helped prepare a comprehensive analysis of Connecticut Housing’s finances, including projections of future income and net assets under a range of management scenarios. This analysis was based on the long-term sustainability analyses we had previously successfully undertaken for Virginia, Colorado, California, Minnesota and other large, complex state housing finance agencies.
A key part of this work was understanding Connecticut Housing's underlying financial structure and possible changes within the parameters of its AAA-rated indenture. We then helped design a new approach, adopted by the Board in the fall of 2020, that does two things. It enables resources from outside the indenture to be used for a wide variety of program initiatives, and it establishes an affordability fund with 50% of net annual income. This work resulted in major new resources for down payment assistance, enabling CHFA to restore its prior maximum loan limits and increase single-family production.
Creation of Multifamily Housing Revenue Bond Program
HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF LOS ANGELES
- Financial Advisory support on Refunding Bonds
- Strategic Planning for the use of bonds to support additional units
- Bond Issuance policy and procedures
- Transaction Services
CSG drafted and assisted Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) on its bond issuance policy and implementation procedures.
We worked with HACLA to:
- Determine potential restructuring options.
- Select an investment banker with the best balance of housing and product domain expertise and cost.
- Restructure the bonds (in coordination with the investment banker), manage the transaction and refunding process and close the transaction
The financing closed under Fannie Mae’s M-TEB program ($17,500,000).
The refunding resulted in and PV savings of over 12% of the refunded bonds with annual debt service savings of over $150K.
The bonds were publicly sold, and achieved a rating of AA+ from Standard and Poor’s. This type of transaction highlights our capacity to work with issuers not only in a conduit capacity, but also how we can use our development and real estate expertise to structure financings for public agencies where the projects are owned or sponsored by the agency.
Another example of this, also with HACLA, is our work on the refinancing of HACLA’s office building.
We are currently working with HACLA to refund the existing general obligation bond issue that was used to finance the acquisition and rehabilitation of its office building in 2007. The existing bonds were credit enhanced by Radian (now Assured Guaranty Corp), and were also the beneficiary of a mortgage against the property.
While the prior bonds were rated on the basis of the Radian insurance, we assisted HACLA in obtaining an Issuer Credit Rating (ICR) from Standard and Poor’s of “A+”. This rating will be applied to the refunding bonds; the bonds will be issued without bond insurance, as the cost of the insurance is not offset by sufficient benefit in yield reduction. This issue is scheduled to price the week of March 12, 2018.
MANAGING & DEPLOYING A ZERO PARTICIPATION LOAN STRATEGY
We have helped many state HFA single-family clients across the country raise and utilize zero participations, or “zeros,” to help obtain full spread on future bond issues.
In this structure, interest from a previously financed portfolio of MBS is participated forward to a subsequent bond issue in order to bring a tax plan into yield compliance.
Such loans, which are referred to as “zero participation loans,” can be used by HFAs to “store” interest in order to subsidize future bond issues that might be under full spread (for example, due to rising bond rates) if not for the loans being participated from a prior tax plan.
Starting in 2013, we helped the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency create a national model for dramatically expanding on-balance sheet single-family lending. A key to this effort, along with the introduction of pass-through bonds and systematic bond pipeline hedging, has been creating and rolling over a large volume of zeros to help assure full spread on subsequent transactions under two different indentures.
To do this, we worked with bond counsel to pioneer methods to:
- Fully exploit hedge gains and losses
- Calculate zero participations on combined taxable and tax-exempt financings.
- Account for the 0% rate on down payment assistance loans for the same borrowers.
By early 2021, the zero participation loan strategy was so successful, and the pool had grown so large (over $120 million), that rolling it over into new bond issues narrowed the types of bond financings the agency could implement. We recommended managing the zero pool to approximately half this size, including by using bond proceeds to fund 0% down payment loans, which had previously relied on the agency’s affordability fund. This strategy expanded down payment resources while effectively managing zeros.
STRATEGIC PLANNING & DEVELOPER CONSULTING
- Strategic Planning
- RAD Transaction Services
CSG began working with PHA in 2013, we helped prepare the RAD portfolio strategy for the agency and submitted RAD applications for over 3,000 units.
Since that time, CSG has assisted PHA in implementing their RAD program, having closed 30 individual RAD transactions. These transactions cover a broad range of RAD types, including:
- Transfer of Assistance
- RAD Blend
- 9% LIHTC
- 4% LIHTC
- Historic Tax Credits
- Rehab and New Construction
CSG has also worked with PHA to develop other comprehensive strategies to better serve the agency, including an Asset Repositioning Strategy and an Operating Strategy for PHA’s affiliated management company, PAPMC. Through this work, CSG has identified approaches to reduce operating costs by 10%. In addition, CSG helped PHA create a 20- year prioritized spending plan to help track available resources compared with agency commitments, and has advised the agency on strategies related to Year 15 exit.
CSG also advised PHA on two non-housing financings, including the agency’s 2017 bond issue to finance construction of its new $40 million headquarters building, as well as financing related to the recently rehabilitated Sharswood School.
RAD Transaction Services: CSG is also assisting PHA with their Faircloth to RAD program. The Philadelphia Housing Authority issued a Request for Proposals to identify developers to build these units. As a result, the existing PHA pipeline has 5 projects for which CSG has or is currently requesting a Notice of Anticipated Rad Rents. Since 2015, CSG is also providing overall program management support including: creating development timelines; organizing and leading weekly and daily calls with PHA team including other consultants and development team members; reviewing the RCNA, preparing the financing template, conducting the site and neighborhood review, drafted documents for FHEO and other documents for HUD financing plan and reviewing documents for consistency and compliance with the HUD rules. To date, CSG has assisted with closing over 2,000 units.
Third Party Developer
Tulsa Housing Authority
Country Club Gardens
- Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD)
- 4% Low-Income Housing
- Tax Credits
- Lender & Investor Selection
CSG and Tulsa Housing Authority are re-syndicating Country Club Gardens, a 353 unit development.
Under our advisory, this project was financed with a successful RAD conversion and 4% LIHTC equity among other funding sources.
We worked with a THA-selected third-party developer to successfully:
- Secure $11M in tax credit equity.
- Model scenarios that provided the most beneficial terms to THA through a partial funding swap of RAD and PBV rents.
- Prepare a RAD financing plan.
- Evaluate an investor and lender solicitation to obtain the best financing terms for THA.
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