Neighbors for Neighborhoods

Albany County Land Bank Neighbors for Neighborhoods posterThe Albany County Land Bank is looking for some landlords.

As part of a new program -- called Neighbors for Neighborhoods -- the land bank has been fixing up a few formerly vacant properties in the city of Albany and is now ready to sell them. That's where the search for landlords comes in. Blurbage:

The Albany County Land Bank will sell up to four (4) fully rehabilitated two-family residential buildings located in Albany County's most distressed neighborhoods to qualified residents who can demonstrate the capacity to own and manage a rental property. Buyers will be required to keep all rental units affordable for a period of 20 years from purchase, during which time they must rent to low-moderate income residents at affordable rental prices ...

As you might expect, there's are a bunch of guidelines for potential property owners. Among them: You have to live within 15 miles of the properties, own two or fewer rental properties, and have "have no current or prior negative real estate history."

That link above has more info about the guidelines and also walks through some of the math on what counts as affordable rental prices. In this case, "affordable" is up to 80 percent of the area median income. For a 1BR apartment that's a rent of $1,296 per month. And the income limit for renters is $48,400 for one person.

There's a workshop about the program Wednesday, November 14 at 6 pm at the Arbor Hill Branch of the Albany Public Library.

The land bank currently has three properties in Arbor Hill/West Hill that will be for sale as part of the program. (One of them is that beautiful building at the corner of Clinton Ave and Judson.) The list prices range from $140k to $160k. There's also a South End property not yet listed.

There are a series of open houses at the properties starting this week. Again, see the link above.

The Albany County Land Bank typically acts as an intermediary that shepherds vacant, foreclosed properties toward stabilization and new ownership (or, sometimes, demolition). So this is a new angle for the org.

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