Now that the town has purchased the property at 23 Winterberry Way, the question before the Municipal Affordable Housing Trust last week was – how best to carry out necessary renovations and manage the resale of the three-bedroom home, which will continue to remain in the town’s affordable home inventory.
Town Manager Sara Stanton reported the home has been fully cleared out, “with assistance from our Facilities Director and his team.” Liz Rust, Director, Regional Housing Services Office (RHSO), then picked up the thread to discuss actions for disposition of the property.
There are two possibilities: the Trust could repair the home and sell it to an eligible client, retaining ownership, or, it could send out a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the property “as is” to an organization such as Habitat for Humanity, which would bid on the RFP to do the renovations and ultimately to sell it under the Habitat program. Rust presented a draft RFP for members’ consideration. She said Habitat is definitely interested in this project.
Stanton moved that the Trust proceed to issue an RFP for the disposition of property at 23 Winterberry Way, incorporating comments from the members made at the meeting. The motion passed unanimously.
Earlier in the meeting, the Trust voted to continue funding the initial rental assistance program that provides help for low-income renters. Rust said that for FY24 there is $17,040 available, which could support five tenants moving into Bedford. She explained that Section 8 vouchers do not pay for rental/security deposits.
In other business, Town Manager Sarah Stanton requested utilization of Trust funds to pay $15,000 in negotiation and legal fees associated with the purchase and sale of 23 Winterberry Way. She further requested authorization for future legal assistance on this project be paid from the Trust funds. Both motions were approved.
Trust members were eager to see the property in its cleaned-out state and made plans for another walk-through (an earlier site visit occurred before the home was fully emptied out.)