The City of Melrose is committed to encouraging the development of affordable housing opportunities in the City of Melrose. Please click on the links below to learn more about the City's Programs.
Current Lotteries within the City of Melrose
Waiting Lists for Affordable Rental Units within Melrose
Current Lotteries in Surrounding Communities
Previous Lotteries within the City of Melrose
First Time Home Buyers Workshops
Grants and Loans for Creating Affordable Housing
Affordable Housing Zoning Changes
Currently Available Affordable Housing Units
Current Lotteries within the City of Melrose:
1. To receive information about upcoming lotteries sponsored by the City of Melrose, please e-mail us at OPCD@cityofmelrose.org with your name, address, and telephone number and with the subject line "affordable housing list."
2. This is where the City will list current affordable housing lotteries (including ownership and rental opportunities) being administered by the City. At this time, the City of Melrose is not administering an affordable housing lottery.
Waiting Lists for Affordable Rental Units within Melrose:
1. Melrose Affordable Housing Corporation owns and manages affordable rentals within the City of Melrose. To learn about the availability of their units contact Lisa Young at the Melrose Housing Authority at 781-665-1622 or email Lisa@melroseha.com
2. Oak Grove Village. The lottery for the 14 affordable rentals available at Oak Grove Village was held in March of 2007. Applications are currently being received for a waiting list. When affordable units become available the management company will contact the waiting list in the order applications are received. To obtain an application and learn more about the units available contact Oak Grove Village at 781.662.3900.
Current Lotteries in Surrounding Communities:
To learn more about lotteries occurring in surrounding communities call a community directly or visit the following websites:
Previous Lotteries within the City of Melrose:
1. Webster Willows - A lottery including 3 condominiums in the newly constructed 26 unit condominium building on Pleasant Street located close to mass transit. The lottery was held in November 2007
2. Oak Grove Village - 14 affordable apartments within the Oak Grove Village mix-use development located next to mass transit and parks were available through a lottery. The lottery was held in March of 2007.
3. Station Crossing - A lottery including 5 condominiums in the newly constructed 48 unit condominium building located close to mass transit and downtown Melrose. The lottery was held in January of 2006.
4. The Essex - A lottery including 3 condominiums in the newly constructed 1 bedroom condominium units in a recently renovated mixed use building located in historic downtown Melrose with close proximity to public transportation. The lottery was held in February of 2010.
Workshop and Financial Assistance for First Time Homebuyers
First Time Home Buyers Workshops
The First Time Home Buyers workshop provides helpful information about the process of purchasing a home, including how to finance a home, understanding your credit history, and learning about financial assistance available. The workshop is an excellent resource and we strongly encourage people interested in purchasing a home to take the workshop. Melrose offers the workshop through the North Suburban Consortium. To find out when the next workshop will be offered, please contact The North Suburban Consortium at 781.324.5720. Accredited First Time Home Buyer's workshops are also offered throughout the state. For a list of the dates and location of upcoming workshops visit the Citizen's Housing and Planning Association's (CHAPA) website: http://www.chapa.org/looking-for-housing/homebuyer-workshops
To qualify for the following programs, applicants must have taken a CHAPA certified first time homebuyers workshop (see above for listing).
Down payment and Closing Cost Assistance. The City of Melrose offers down payment and closing cost assistance through the North Suburban Consortium (NSC). To be eligible for this assistance household income must not exceed 80% of the medium in the Boston metropolitan area as defined by HUD and the property to be purchased must not exceed the maximum sale price for the particular community in which the house is located. Additionally, eligible applicants must either use the Soft Second mortgage package or a Mass Housing Finance mortgage package (described below); however, some exceptions do apply.
$7,500 for single family homes and condominiums
$8,500 for two-family homes
$9,000 for three-family homes
Purchase Price Limits for Homes Purchased in Melrose:
$312,895 for condominiums
$399,000 for single family homes
$501,125 for two-family homes
$560,231 for three-family homes
To obtain an application contact the North Suburban Consortium at 781.324.5720. If you are applying for an affordable housing ownership unit in Melrose through a City administered lottery you do not need to fill out an additional application to apply. However, you must indicate your interest in participating in this program to OPCD.
Second Soft Loan Program. The Soft Second Loan Program offers reduced cost mortgage financing. Borrowers must be creditworthy and meet standard underwriting criteria. To qualify household income must not exceed 100% of the median income for the Boston Metropolitan Area as defined by HUD. Through the "Soft Second" program borrowers get two mortgages through a participating lender. The second mortgage is subsidized by the North Suburban Consortium through a Mass Housing Partnership Loan. Borrowers pay less than the standard mortgage and interest payments on the second mortgage and avoid having to pay private mortgage insurance.
For more information about the Soft Second Loan Program visit the Massachusetts Housing Partnership's website: www.mhp.net/homeownership/homebuyer/index.php or call the North Suburban Consortium at 781.324.5720.
For a list of participating lenders visit: www.mhp.net/homeownership/banks.php
Mass Housing Finance Agency. TheMass Housing Finance Agency offers several programs including subsidized mortgage packages. To learn about these programs visit their website at www.masshousing.com or call them at 617.854.1000.
Creating Affordable Housing Opportunities
Grants and Loans for Creating Affordable Housing:
The City of Melrose is a member of the North Suburban Consortium, which administers federal HOME funds. With these funds, the City has been able to financially support the development of affordable rental and home ownership opportunities within Melrose. HOME funds are available in the form of grants and loans and are administered on a rolling basis. Applications for HOME funds can be obtained through the City's Office of Planning and Community Development, OPCD@cityofmelrose.org or 781-979-4190 or download the application at the North Suburban Consortium's website: www.northsuburbanconsortium.org/index.php?page=developers .
Recent HOME Loans and Grants:
Melrose Affordable Housing Corporation (MAHC)
Fall 2006—MAHC received a grant from the North Suburban Consortium to purchase a six unit rental building. The three units, for which the Home funds were earmarked, have rents that are affordable to households making 60% of area median income as determined by HUD. The remaining three units have rents affordable to households making 80% of median income.
Spring 2004—MAHC received a grant from the North Suburban Consortium to purchase a three unit rental building. The two HOME funded unites have rents affordable to households making 60% of area median income as determined by HUD.
Winter 2006—Five units affordable to households making 80% of median income was a condition of the Special Permit granted by the Planning Board . Home funds were used to further reduce the sale price of the units to be affordable to households making 60% of median income. The developer also received a construction loan through the NSC to secure the completion of the project.
Winter/Spring 2008—Three affordable units within a 26 unit condominium building were made available through a collaboration between the developer and the City. The City used HOME Funds to subsidize the three units to make them affordable to households making 80% of median income.
Affordable Housing Zoning Change:
In the summer of 2004 the City of Melrose adopted the Affordable Housing Incentive Zoning Program Special Permit. This special permit requires that residential and mix-use developments with five or more residential units include 10% of the units as affordable to household making 50% to 80% of median income in the Boston metropolitan areas as defined by HUD. OPCD anticipates new affordable housing units becoming available in 2009.