BOISE—There may be one less step in Idaho’s low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) allocation program in 2008. One of the proposed changes being considered is the elimination of the "commitment" stage. Idaho has had four allocation stages: reservation, commitment, carryover, and placed in service. The commitment stage has occurred 90 days after reservations were made, and with the timing of the two stages being so close many of the documentation items that were required were often not available by the second stage, according to an official with the Idaho Housing and Finance Association (IHFA).

The stage was unique to Idaho, with most states having only three steps, according to IHFA.

The state’s draft qualified allocation plan was expected to be finalized by the first of the new year.

IHFA is also proposing to increase its minimum annual operating cost per unit to $3,500, including reserves, for family developments. Seniors housing developments will remain at $3,200.

The state also wants to increase the minimum amount of rehabilitation that is required. For a building to be considered substantially rehabilitated, the hard rehab expenditures during any 24-month period must equal or exceed an average of $20,000 per unit. That’s up from an average of $7,500 or 10 percent of the building’s depreciable basis.

In another move, IHFA is considering requiring developments receiving tax credits to be managed by an agent with experience in tax credit housing, not just affordable housing experience. On-site managers of LIHTC developments with more than 20 units would also need training or the developers would have to put forth an alternate system of controls to ensure compliance.

The first-round deadline was Sept. 7, 2007, and a second-round deadline is scheduled for Feb. 15, 2008. Reservations are made 60 to 90 days following a deadline.

In 2007, 10 developments were reserved about $3.5 million in LIHTCs. Four were projects that had previously obtained a LIHTC award and were receiving additional credits. IHFA reported that 95 percent of the credits went toward new construction while the rest went toward acquisition-rehab. For-profit developers received about 90 percent of the 2007 credits, and 10 percent went to nonprofits.

The median tax credit award was $337,306, and the median project size was 42 units. Without the additional credit awards, the median was $503,416.

IHFA reported that the state will have about $260 million in tax-exempt privateactivity bonds in 2008. It is unknown how much will go toward rental housing.


  • 2008 LIHTC authority (est.): $2.9 million
  • Application deadlines: Feb 15, 2008