Montpelier, Vt. – Governor Phil Scott and the Vermont Department of Housing and Community Development, along with statewide partners have launched the Vermont Housing Improvement Program (VHIP) designed to bring housing units back online by investing in existing, but under-utilized structures. VHIP builds upon past rental rehabilitation pilot programs that used modest public investment to revitalize housing in Vermont’s downtown areas, while helping renters and property owners who are most in need of assistance.
The program, funded using federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds, will invest a total of $5 million into the state’s aging housing stock. VHIP will provide grants of up to $30,000 per unit with a 20% funding match required to bring code non-compliant units back into habitability. This round of grants is dedicated to units serving renters who are exiting homelessness.
“Expanding the housing stock has been a top priority of me and my team, investing more than any Administration in history,” said Governor Phil Scott. “In addition to building new housing, VHIP will be critical for bringing housing that has fallen into disrepair back online, helping provide more housing for the workforce, lift people out of homelessness, and aid in the transformational change we are seeking to create stronger communities.”
“Throughout the course of the pandemic many businesses received financial assistance, but one of the populations that has been overlooked is the mom-and-pop landlords across the state. We designed this program for the long run with the success of the landlord and the tenant in mind,” said Housing and Community Development Commissioner Josh Hanford, “With this program, you are creating permanent housing and improving neighborhoods.”
“We are working from the ground up, addressing the needs of the most vulnerable,” said Shaun Gilpin Housing and Community Development Housing Division director. “We have been working with Vermont’s five homeownership centers to create a new program that is based on successful models and improves upon past efforts to bring more housing on-line.”
VHIP partners include Champlain Housing Trust, Rural Edge, Downstreet Housing and Community Development, Windham and Windsor Housing Trust, and Neighborworks of Western Vermont.
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For Immediate Release
Wednesday, December 8, 2021
Jason Maulucci, Press Secretary
Office of the Governor
Josh Hanford, Commissioner
Department of Housing and Community Development