Local Housing Incentives Account (LHIA)
Focus on affordable housing
LHIA grants fund the expansion and preservation of affordable housing for rental and ownership to help municipalities meet their negotiated LCA housing goals. Grant funds cover gap financing costs such as land/property/structure acquisition, demolition, site preparation (such as water, sewer, roads), general construction/structural additions, alterations and rehabilitation, interior and exterior finishing, roofing, electrical, plumbing, heating and ventilation. Soft costs, such as architects fees and travel expenses, are ineligible.
The Metropolitan Council partners with Minnesota Housing, the Family Housing Fund, and others to implement the LHIA program. Communities participating in the Metropolitan Livable Communities Local Housing Incentives Program may apply for LHIA funding through the Minnesota Housing Consolidated RFP.
When submitting an application, municipalities must include an Acknowledgment of Receptivity form from the local unit of government and agree to match grant funding on a dollar-for-dollar basis.
As LHIA grants are awarded through a joint process, all applications are reviewed and evaluated by the funding partners with Council staff applying the Metropolitan Council project eligibility criteria.
Applicants seeking LHIA funding should consider the following requirements and priorities.
1. A significant component of the project must serve households with incomes at or below 80% of Area Median Income (AMI).
2. Projects must have affirmative fair housing marketing plans.
The Council will give priority to:
rental proposals creating or preserving affordability for persons at or below 30% of AMI;
proposals that serve large families by providing two or more bedroom units; and
proposals serving people experiencing long-term homelessness.
The Council will give preference if:
A municipality has a lower Housing Performance Score than the other proposals being considered for funding.
A municipality currently has a net fiscal disparities contribution of $200 or more per household;
A municipality does not use its expenditure from the Affordable and Lifecycle Housing Opportunity Amount (ALHOA) as the source for its matching funds; or
A project exceeds the current building code requirement that:
- a minimum of 5% of the total units in a development be designed and constructed to meet accessibility requirements, and the additional 2% of the dwelling units that must be adaptable for vision/hearing impaired.
- If any applications are received for projects exceeding these minimums, any other applications for affordable housing projects outside the Metro Mobility service area will receive the same preference, even if they do not propose to exceed those minimums.