(Photo via TD Bank)

The TD Charitable Foundation Seeks Solutions to Growing Rental Burden Crisis

Originally published on newscenter.td.com.

The increasing shortage of affordable housing creates a multitude of economic issues including the inability of households and individuals to establish financial stability and plan for the future. As housing costs consume a growing share of income, it forces decisions that make it virtually impossible to build credit and pay off student debt. The TD Charitable Foundation, the charitable giving arm of TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, today announced it will seek solutions to expanding the stock of affordable rental units. The Foundation will award $3.75 million to 30 local housing non-profit organizations to refurbish existing housing stock and create safe, healthy and affordable rental units.

Rental burden, traditionally defined as 30% or more income utilization on rental housing costs, has grown to an average of 40 percent of Americans, according to a study conducted by The Pew Charitable Trusts in 2015.  According to a 2018 national study of rental affordability by The Pew Charitable Trusts, rent-burdened families face additional layers of financial insecurity including average savings of less than $10 while their non-burdened and homeowning counterparts had $1,000 and $7,000 in liquid savings, respectively. These statistics point to overspending on housing costs, particularly those for renters, as a key indicator and contributor to unhealthy financial circumstances.

“Throughout the communities TD serves from Maine to Florida, issues related to affordability for renters emerged as a more prevalent concern than affordability for homeowners,” said Paige Carlson-Heim, Director of the TD Charitable Foundation. “On average renters are 25-45% more strained by housing costs than their homeowning counterparts. To address this growing crisis, the TD Charitable Foundation has chosen to focus on affordable rental housing in this year’s Housing for Everyone competition.”

The goal of this year’s competition is to offer support to non-profits refurbishing existing housing stock for affordable rental units. The grants will fund programs that provide access to safe, clean, physically accessible affordable rental housing units for families, individuals, the elderly, new Americans, veterans, the disabled, women and youth.

“We at TD recognize that affordable housing improves the quality of life of residents by leading to better health, adequate jobs, financial stability, security, and population diversity. The effects of affordable housing on residents are profound and capable of transforming communities,” said Carlson-Heim.

Applications will only be accepted through the TD Charitable Foundation’s online application system and should be submitted by 4:00 p.m. (EST) on October 25, 2019.  Paper applications will not be accepted.

Notification of awards will be made by mid-February 2020.

The online application and additional information about the Housing for Everyone grant competition is available at https://www.tdbank.com/corporate-responsibility/the-ready-commitment/funding-opportunities/

  • Applications for funding must focus on:
  • Preservation/Rehabilitation/Expansion of viable existing affordable housing properties:  This may include the redesign, reconfiguration and or re-use of existing space in affordable housing properties to create increased quality and quantity of affordable housing units that will meet the specific needs of the population which they are intended to serve.  Upgrades to systems, structure and efficiency of properties to preserve and prolong their use will be considered.
  • Special consideration will also be given to those initiatives that focus on energy efficiencies to be realized through foundation funding.  Initiatives may also benefit from utilizing underused or abandoned properties.

Applications must meet the following guidelines:

  • Applicant organization must be tax-exempt under IRS Code 501(c) (3) or must be a state/local government entity;
  • Housing units or properties to be improved must be located in a TD Bank, N.A. metro market area;
  • Applicant organization must not discriminate on the basis of race, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identification, marital status, family status, veteran status, disability or other characteristic protected by law.
  • Applicant organization must have a history of developing, maintaining and/or providing affordable housing for low- and moderate-income families or individuals
  • Applicant organization must be able to show the impact it has made to affordable housing efforts in their community;
  • Applicant organization must show fiscal responsibility and ongoing viability;
  • All housing units or properties to be improved or developed must be for and occupied by  low- and moderate-income families or individuals;
  • Applicant organizations seeking funds for the rehabilitation of rental units must complete renovations to those units sometime during the period from the receipt of funds through December 2021
  • Applicant organization must be current on all outstanding debt obligations, utility payments and taxes, there can be no unsatisfied judgments/liens for which the applicant is liable;
  • Applicant organization must be able to quantify the impact of its proposed affordable housing project;
  • Applicant organization must not have any pending legal actions against it.

The Housing for Everyone grant competition supports TD’s longstanding commitment to community enrichment through TD’s corporate citizenship platform, The Ready Commitment.  The Ready Commitment actively promotes inclusivity, economic vitality, environmental wellbeing and health, enabling people of all backgrounds to succeed in a rapidly changing world. As part of The Ready Commitment, TD targets US $775 million in total by 2030 towards community giving in four critical areas: Financial Security, a more Vibrant Planet, Connected Communities and Better Health. Through this platform, TD aspires to create a more inclusive tomorrow — helping people of all backgrounds feel more confident, not just about their finances, but about their ability to achieve their goals. Visit https://www.tdbank.com/corporate-responsibility/the-ready-commitment/

 

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