Be SMART Multifamily
Purpose of the Program
The Be SMART Multifamily program is being undertaken to:
- Improve the energy efficiency of the existing rental housing stock in the 15 targeted
- Create and preserve affordable rental housing opportunities; and
- Increase the availability of capital to finance energy efficiency measures by leveraging
other public and private capital.
Be SMART Multifamily complements the Department’s Multifamily Energy Efficiency
and Housing Affordability (MEEHA) Program
and the Green Grant Rental Housing Preservation
Program, which provide funding for energy audits and energy efficiency improvements
of affordable multifamily rental housing developments across the State of Maryland.
Eligible Types of Housing
Priority for program loans will be given to multifamily rental properties that are
located in the
15 targeted Main Street communities and the
counties in which these 15 Main Street communities are situated. “Affordable” means
rental housing with existing income or rent restrictions, or housing with units
that serve tenants with low to moderate incomes, as determined by the Department.
Multifamily rental housing may include apartment buildings, townhouses, single-family
homes, single room occupancy (SRO) and shared housing facilities with five (5) or
Eligible Activities – Program Loan Structuring
Program funds will be used to make direct loans for the purchase and installation
of equipment and materials for energy efficiency measures at existing multifamily
rental properties. Program funds will also be used to establish loan loss reserves
to induce private sector lenders to make loans for the same purpose.
Proposed energy efficiency measures must be based on an Energy Audit in a format
and from an
auditor approved by the Department . Energy
efficiency measures eligible for funding include, but are not limited to: lighting
retrofits, hot water heater retrofits and replacements, ENERGY STAR qualified HVAC
systems, insulation, windows, draft stopping and duct sealing, appliances and fixtures,
water conservation measures, and renewable energy generation and water heating equipment.
Program loans will finance energy efficiency measures identified in the Energy Audit.
- The Energy Audit must provide an estimate of operating expense savings
to the property owner that will result from identified energy efficiency measures.
Estimated savings will be used to size and structure the loan from the Program.
In select cases where reduced utility expenses for tenants result in a reduced utility
allowance, a portion of these savings may be used to justify increased contract
rents to support a loan from the Program.
- The interest rate of the Program loan will be based upon the overall
cost of funds to the Department, with adjustments as necessary to reflect the specific
risk of each transaction.
- The term of the Program loan will generally not exceed the weighted
economic life of the energy efficiency measures that are undertaken. Generally,
Program loans are expected to have a term of between 5 and 15 years.
- Program loans may be structured in a position subordinate to conventional
financing and allow for repayment on a cash flow basis. Borrowers will be required
to adhere to programmatic requirements such as reporting, income restrictions, and
federal cross cutting rules including the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)
and Davis Bacon.
- Program loans will be secured with standard loan documents that
reflect all the terms and conditions of the loan and, where necessary, incorporate
terms imposed by providers of other funding.
- Borrowers must also agree to maintain an agreed upon percentage of the units
affordable to families whose income does not exceed 100% of area median
income, with a preference provided for projects which restrict the greatest number
of units for the longest term.
How to Apply:
Applicants should complete the Be SMART Multifamily program loan application
along with the supporting documentation and submit it to DHCD as outlined on the
application. PDF files are preferred.
Applications will be accepted on an on-going basis and evaluated based on readiness
to proceed and how the project furthers both the energy efficiency and the housing
affordability purposes of the program. Priority will be given to projects in the
DHCD’s pipeline for rental housing financing, DHCD’s portfolio, or other assisted
Be SMART Multifamily Application
- Part I
Be SMART Multifamily Application
- Part II
For More Information, Contact:
- Better Buildings in Maryland – Be SMART Multifamily
- Multifamily Housing Programs
- Community Development Administration
- Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development
- 7800 Harkins Road, Lanham, MD 20706
- Toll Free (Maryland Only): 800-543-4505
- Danielle England, CDA
- Tel: (410) 514-7441
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Lee Peschau, Construction Manager, CDA
- Tel: (410) 514-7477
- E-mail: Peschau@mdhousing.org