Steps to develop housing:
- Identify your target population, and the needs of that population. Identify the income, types of disability, and supportive service needs.
- Determine if you want to create project-based housing (a building) or scattered-site housing (rent assistance program where apartments are scattered). Building or renovating a building can cost much more time and money up front, but can cost less per unit in the long run. Providing rent subsidies to tenants to rent their own apartment in the community from various private landlords can require less time to implement and provide more choice for the consumer.
- Identify the area you want this housing to be.
- Determine how many housing apartment units you want to have. (See the Housing Development Estimator link below to estimate costs).
- Identify any zoning or environmental barriers that may delay or prevent your project. Avoid circumstances requiring a variance or change in use. Also make sure that the government entity is not violating Fair Housing or ADA laws by requiring an unnecessary variance or different steps not required of other developers. (See Legal page for details).
- Determine the hard costs of the project (ie, acquisition, construction or renovation) and the soft costs (ie, architect, legal, environmental reviews, surveys).(See the Housing Development Estimator link below to estimate costs).
- Determine how much rent you think you can charge the tenants based on their income and the rental market. Affordable rent is considered to be no more than 30% of the tenant's income.
- Identify funding sources for the development costs of the housing and any needed funds for rental subsidies and supportive services.
- Assemble a Development Team to create plans, seek funding and proceed with next steps. (Some funding sources or your procurement policies may require you get bids for some of the positions or contracts). Your Development Team may include: Project Coordinator, Architect, Contractor, Attorney, Accountant and Supportive Services Planner.
- If you or your organization have never developed housing, we recommend that you partner with an experienced developer or development organization such as a Community Development Corporation (CDC) or Community Housing Development Corporation (CHDO).
- Use the National Supportive Housing Network's Housing Development Estimator to estimate the costs of developing housing.
ACCESS THE NSHN'S HOUSING DEVELOPMENT ESTIMATOR HERE (Members Only).
Helps you create various housing development budgets to estimate the cost of a housing project:
Draft Development Budget
Operating Pro Forma
Sources and Uses