Lancaster-based HDC MidAtlantic, a nonprofit organization that develops and manages affordable rental housing, this week started renovations on four of its housing complexes in Central Pennsylvania.
A total of 208 apartments are involved in the $21.6 million plan, which covers units at two complexes in Lancaster County — Apartments at Mulberry Corners in Lancaster and Rockford Chase Apartments in Mountville — as well as Springwood Glen Apartments in Middletown, Dauphin County, and Wyndamere Apartments in York.
HDC said the renovations are needed to ensure that more than 200 households will continue to have decent affordable places to call home. Rents will range from $455 to $960 per month, depending on household income.
“In a rental market this tight, where wages continue to be stagnant, communities must take steps to preserve every affordable unit to meet the needs of their residents,” said Dana Hanchin, HDC’s president and CEO.
HDC said the renovation work is slated for completion in January.
The nonprofit is funding the projects through a tax-exempt bond that was issued by the Lancaster County Redevelopment Authority. As part of the bond deal, HDC also received federal tax credits through the state-affiliated Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency.
The four complexes were originally built between 15 and 18 years ago using the same tax-credit program, known as the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program. A property that has operated under the tax-credit program for at least 15 years is able to apply for new tax credits, according HDC officials.
“Coupling these tax credits with tax-exempt bond financing has really become the only viable option in our industry to preserve these types of properties,” HDC spokeswoman Amanda Meyers said in a statement.
As housing complexes reach the 15-year mark, HDC looks to do renovations. The organization has used bond deals to preserve 15 other properties totaling 720 units, Meyers said.
The work will focus on interior upgrades and energy-efficiency enhancements. Residents will see new doors, windows and hardware, new cabinetry and appliances, new flooring and paint and upgraded HVAC, electrical and plumbing systems inside units and community spaces.
Apartments designated for individuals with disabilities will be updated to current Americans with Disabilities Act standards and include the installation of new bathroom grab bars and roll-in showers with floor drains, accessible countertops and shelving, as well as new flooring.
New safety features will include new lighting, motion sensors, property cameras, and new smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
Other exterior improvements will include new roofing, gutters and downspouts, repair or replacement of decking materials and railings and new paint to exterior metal railings. Sidewalks, as well as dumpster pads and surrounds, will be repaired or replaced. Select parking lots will see new ADA van accessible striping for parking spots.
Property signage also will be installed, while tot lots will get new vinyl surrounds and mulching.
These communities will not close during the renovations, according to HDC.
HDC owns and/or manages more than 3,700 affordable apartments. In addition to Pennsylvania, the organization works in Delaware and Maryland.