On August 7, 2014, HAC wrote a letter to Tony Hernandez, USDA’s rural housing programs administrator, to express concern about tenants in properties that will lose USDA Section 521 Rental Assistance when their USDA mortgages mature. Over 8,000 properties with Section 515 or Section 514 mortgages are expected to make their last payments to USDA by the year 2020. Because many of the tenants rely on USDA Section 521 Rental Assistance, which is available only when a USDA mortgage is in place, thousands of tenants in those 8,000 properties risk losing their aid when these mortgages mature.
HAC’s letter to Hernandez encourages USDA to follow HUD’s practice and ask property owners to notify tenants at least nine months before their Rental Assistance ends. The letter also asks for a dialogue between HAC, USDA, and other interested parties to identify approaches to keeping the housing affordable.