Working families from Gautier, Mississippi, found a place to call home. Affordable housing in the Mississippi Coast has been scarce since Hurricane Katrina; so for the 240 families of low and moderate income that moved into Toulon Apartments, it is a very special domicile.
It isn’t just the Energy Star appliances and the fact that each apartment has a washer and dryer; it is also the gated access, swimming pool, fitness and business centers, and even the storage units (available for an additional monthly fee). But most importantly, it allowed them to come back to live in the area they love.
In order to attract more low and moderate income working families to the Mississippi Gulf Coast communities, the finances for affordable housing needed to work in a different way. The property was developed as a mixed-finance project including funds from several sources. The development had a special mortgage loan, a product developed to facilitate the new construction or substantial rehabilitation of multifamily rental or cooperative housing for moderate-income families, elderly, and the handicapped.
The HUD insured loan was for $17 million. It also had a $4 million grant from the Long Term Workforce Housing Program. Additional gap funding was provided by the Mississippi Development Authority, using Community Development Block Grant funds, leveraged with monies from private investors. It took a few years but when Paula Carruth, HUD Director for the Office of Multifamily Housing in Mississippi, was able to hold the final closing meeting, her satisfaction was profound. It meant affordable housing for working families for the long haul.