HAI Group Blog

Insurance, Risk Management, and Professional Development Tips for the Affordable Housing Industry.

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Q&A: Navigating the Landscape of Affordable Housing Finance and Development with Grow America's RHDFP Certification Program

For professionals in public and affordable housing, this is a time of both tremendous need and immense opportunity. Affordable rental housing is scarce, disrupting the availability of homes for workers and families across most demographics—ranging from recent graduates embarking on their careers to working families, low-income individuals, and those reliant on fixed incomes such as senior citizens, veterans, and individuals with disabilities.

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Navigating Commercial Insurance: A Guide for Public and Affordable Housing Agencies

Navigating the complex commercial insurance landscape can sometimes feel like deciphering hieroglyphics in a funhouse maze—confusing, daunting, and occasionally filled with unexpected twists and turns. However, for public and affordable housing providers, mastering the basics of insurance is akin to wielding a powerful shield against the whims of fate, ensuring the protection of vital assets and the continuity of essential services.

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Get to Know the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation (PAHRC)

At a time when a decent, safe, and affordable place to call home is out of reach for more than 15 million Americans, the preservation of affordable housing is more important than ever. For over a decade, the Public and Affordable Housing Research Organization (PAHRC) has been on a mission to help improve this statistic by providing data, research, and tools to help policymakers, housing providers, researchers, advocates, and other stakeholders raise awareness about this critical issue, and ultimately impact change.

In addition to partnering with some big names in the industry, PAHRC has a longstanding relationship with the affordable housing insurance carrier HAI Group, which has been a key sponsor of PAHRC since its inception in 2012. Both organizations share the same goal of supporting the affordable housing industry through various avenues. Over the years, HAI Group’s financial support has made numerous initiatives possible, from webinar opportunities to obtaining data for PAHRC’s annual Housing Impact Report, and most notably, developing the National Housing Preservation Database (NHPD).

HAI Group’s Staci Canny sat down with Kelly McElwain, a lead research analyst at PAHRC, to discuss her work.

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New Research Shares PHA Policies and Practices to Promote Equity

The word ‘equity’ has become a buzzword in today’s social landscape. And when it comes to public housing authorities (PHAs), striving to achieve equitable outcomes through their policies, practices, and partnerships is a continuous goal. Although it can be challenging to implement initiatives when PHAs face hardships, from funding constraints to a lack of community partners, many organizations are making this happen. To help PHAs learn from their peers, the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation (PAHRC) surveyed PHAs about their equity initiatives and the resources needed to expand this work. This data came together to form PAHRC’s latest report, How Public Housing Authorities Are Addressing Equity. The report, which HAI Group sponsored, also includes a resource guide that outlines the strategies PHAs can pursue to help residents of all backgrounds achieve successful outcomes. 

HAI Group’s Staci Canny sat down with PAHRC’s Lead Research Analyst Kelly McElwain, and Eric Brushett, a research analyst at PAHRC, to discuss this report. 

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3 Skills You Need to Be an Effective Manager in the Affordable Housing Industry

The micromanager. The workaholic. The narcissist. Chances are you’ve encountered at least one of these bad boss types in your career, so it might not come as a surprise to hear that organizations fail to hire the right candidate for a managerial position 82 percent of the time. On top of that, over the last few years, managers have been put through the wringer—they’ve had to endure a pandemic, find solutions to retain and attract talent during the Great Resignation, and keep employees engaged in the wake of ‘quiet quitting.’ So, what’s the secret sauce to beating the odds and hiring—or becoming—a successful manager? HAI Group’s Staci Canny asked Michael Teape, owner and lead training consultant of Teape Training International, for advice. 

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Exploring the Guardians of Community Affordability: Insights from Two Proactive Organizations

While the terms ‘subsidized’ and ‘affordable’ often go hand in hand when most people think about the U.S. affordable housing stock, the reality is that only 25 percent of the country’s affordable rental units receive government subsidies.

The other 75 percent is known as naturally occurring affordable housing (NOAH)—rental properties that are affordable to low- and moderate-income families due to age, amenities, physical condition, or location in lower-cost markets.

But, despite their vast presence, these properties are at a high risk of disappearing due to redevelopment, disrepair, and economic instability. HAI Group spoke with Dr. Hilary Lopez, executive director of Reno Housing Authority in Nevada, and Dunni T. Cosey Gay, director of the Preservation Compact, a Chicago-area policy collaborative, to hear how their organizations have found success with preserving NOAH in their respective communities as a complement to subsidized housing. 

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3 Free Preservation Resources Housing Agencies Need to Know About

As the U.S. is facing a shortage of over seven million affordable rental homes for extremely low-income renters, and more than 320,000 homes have affordability restrictions expiring in the next five years, advocating for the need for affordable housing has never been greater. Today, housing agencies are exploring various preservation options, from purchasing Naturally Occurring Affordable Housing (NOAH) properties to accepting donated buildings, engaging in green construction, or participating in the latest tax credit programs.

No matter what route your agency may go down to acquire and rehab existing affordable housing, we’ve rounded up three preservation resources that you should add to your toolbox. The best part is they’re available to agencies at no cost!

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Flood Planning and Mitigation for Affordable Housing

With flooding now the top natural peril in the U.S., and research finding that 40 percent of the nation’s occupied rental stock is located in areas likely to experience a substantial annual loss due to natural disasters, one thing’s for sure: It is critical for affordable housing providers to be prepared. On the heels of their recent webinar, titled Flood Planning and Mitigation for Affordable Housing Organizations, the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation’s Lead Research Analyst Kelly McElwain, and HAI Group’s Lynn Crisci, assistant director of Product Development, along with Mary Ciccaglione, manager of Risk Control and Consulting, spoke with HAI Group’s Staci Canny to answer some of the webinar audiences’ top questions.

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