2017 Symposium Industry Report: Pay for Success

affordable housing properties more financially viable by reducing turnover and maintenance costs. NHPF finds that investing in these onsite services reduces losses due to vacancy, bad debt, and legal fees by over $300 per unit, meaning that more affordable housing properties can stay affordable. Resident service programs generally cost around $300–$400 per unit. Currently, most government financing programs do not fund resident services for affordable housing units or do so in a limited capacity, leaving housing pro- viders severely undercapitalized and pressed to deliver comprehensive services through charitable donations and not-for-profit partnerships. Affordable hous- ing providers need front-end capitalization to provide these valuable services, making them perfect candidates for Pay for Success projects. As mentioned pre- viously, resident services are crucial to maintaining a higher standard of living at affordable housing units, as well as ensuring their continued financial viability. In addition, resident services reduce the costs of social services to local govern- ments, such as child welfare, law enforcement, and education programs. In addi- tion, resident services programs reduce turnover, keeping families off the streets and in stable housing. Pay for Success projects have huge future potential to fund quality onsite services for affordable housing properties. Because of the tangible reductions in social service costs associated with resident services, local and state governments should invest in promoting and funding such programs. Internal NHPF studies demonstrate that comprehensive resident services and on-site coordinators have tangible benefits to local communities. Properties report fewer 911 phone calls, reduced crime rates, and higher self-reported satisfaction with living conditions. Because resident services are a preventive measure that reduces the need for social and law enforcement services, which constitute a large taxpayer burden, local governments and communities have a vested interest in capitalizing on-site services efficiently provided by the private sector. NHPF provides resident services at its properties through Operation Pathways, a subsidiary organization composed of service coordinators who work with each individual property to address occupants’ needs. Operation Pathways has provided millions of dollars’ worth of social services to thousands of resi- dents, such as:

• F ree afterschool and summer school programs for families with young children to assist working parents, resulting in significant decreases in summer learning loss • F inancial literacy workshops and savings account programs. Residents in participating properties are given the opportunity to open Individual Development Accounts where the program matches each $1 deposited by the resident with $4 for those saving to purchase a home or start a business, and $8 for those

42 Pay for Success & Affordable Housing | Stefano Rumi

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