Merchants M knockout

Merchants Capital Secures $26MM+ for Affordable Housing Development in Chicago’s Woodlawn Neighborhood

CHICAGO – The Chicago office of financial services company Merchants Capital recently secured more than $26 million in financing for the acquisition of Island Terrace, an affordable apartment complex in Chicago’s Woodlawn neighborhood. The project is located across from the planned Obama Presidential Center in Chicago.

Headshot of Emmett Donovan
Emmett Donovan

“We are proud to have served as the financing partner for this important project in Chicago,” said Emmett Donovan, Senior Vice President at Merchants Capital. “Merchants Capital is committed to preserving and expanding affordable housing options across the United States, and our work on this project strongly exemplifies that commitment.”

After acquisition, the borrower, Preservation of Affordable Housing, Inc. (POAH), plans to syndicate the property with a tax credit structure utilizing both a 4% and 9% Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), making Island Terrace one of the first housing properties to utilize this unique type of financing. Upon syndication, all 240 units will be divided into two condominiums, with 178 units housed in the 4% LIHTC condo and 62 units in the 9% LIHTC condo.

In addition to securing the acquisition bridge loan facility, Merchants Capital issued project term sheets for both the 4% and 9% LIHTC equity bridge loans to be used during the construction and renovation phase.

“We are delighted to announce our purchase of Island Terrace. This is a crucial preservation opportunity given its location, and working with Merchants we can ensure its long-term affordability,” said Bill Eager, Senior Vice President at POAH.

The syndication will ensure the long-term affordability of the project with the 20-year extension of the existing project-based Section 8 contract covering 88 units, the transfer and 20-year extension of a project-based Section 8 contract covering 44 additional units, an existing Chicago Low-Income Housing Trust Fund use agreement covering 11 units and a new Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) use agreement restricting the remaining 99 units at the 60% and 80% area median income (AMI) levels utilizing income averaging.

Renovation to Island Terrace is expected to begin in mid-2022, with a focus on improvements to major property systems and modernization of approximately $100,000 per unit.

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