What if You were able to Double Your CDC’s Housing Portfolio this Year?

What if you were able to double your Community Development Corporation’s (CDC’s) housing portfolio this year? That may sound crazy but think about it, what if you were able to double your portfolio this year?

We understand that financial and physical resources are very limited. There’s only so much money in your budget and while you may be able to secure financing for new construction, deferred maintenance of your existing portfolio looms large. We also understand that your CDC has a limited physical footprint, so how could you possibly double your housing portfolio with these parameters in place?

Just last year, the City of Portland received more than 250 permit applications for Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs). If you dig into the reasons for the recent explosion in popularity of ADUs, you’ll find that our unique housing market and zoning codes offer opportunities for CDCs to maximize their portfolios and develop new streams of income by adding ADUs to their existing single family properties. 

ADUs are a great idea as they increase the housing stock without requiring you to purchase new land. Why not build a bunch of these small-scale houses on property you already own? They can be homes for the elderly and homes for the young. They provide rental income, investment opportunities and much needed, affordable housing … all in your backyard.

If you review your CDC’s portfolio of properties and own any properties that are zoned residential, then you have property where ADUs can be developed.

Even better, the City of Portland currently offers incentives that may allow you to save as much as $20,000 in development fees on each ADU you build. The City is currently waiving the System Development Charges (SDCs) for these project types. However, this waiver is set to expire in July of 2018, so now is the perfect time to take advantage of this savings. 

Another great cost-savings opportunity for these project types is to develop a series of prototypes that can be adapted to work on each of your properties - and rolled out simultaneously. This can save you time, construction costs and increase the economy of scale with these small projects.

There is also the option of building modular designs that can be fabricated off-site and installed in only a few days - meaning a minimal impact to existing tenants. Further, this would allow us to permit these projects through the State Of Oregon, and permit multiple projects at once. This could create even more savings. 

Are your existing properties beginning to feel the effects of deferred maintenance? Would quickly and efficiently developing a large number of income-producing properties help your pro-forma?

We’re at a unique point in our city, where land acquisition costs are high and access to affordable housing is scarce. Yet we, at Propel Studio, believe your CDC has the opportunity to meet your housing-driven mission, maybe even double your portfolio this year.

If any of our questions intrigue you, let us know. We’ll be glad to talk about them.

In the meantime, you may also be interested in reading some of our other ADU-related articles including: “5 Ways Portland, Oregon CDCs Can Benefit From The ADU Craze” and "Frequently Asked Questions about ADU Design and Construction."