FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP – A ribbon-cutting ceremony today joined by New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA) Executive Director Charles A. Richman marked the opening of 75 new apartments affordable for residents age 55 and older.
Wemrock Senior Living, located on Route 33 Business and developed by PIRHL Developers, LLC, provides one- and two-bedroom apartments for residents earning up to 60% of the area median income. The four-story building also includes five apartments for formerly homeless residents, and five set aside for individuals with disabilities, aged 18 years or older coming out of nursing homes to be placed in permanent supportive housing. The development is the first by PIRHL in Monmouth County and its first senior development in New Jersey.
"Developments like Wemrock Senior Living expand housing opportunities affordable to seniors living on limited incomes and enables them to remain in the community,” said NJHMFA Executive Director Richman. "In addition, it will provide homes for families and individuals with special needs to enable them to live independently in the community, which has been a key part of our mission.”
NJHMFA awarded the developer 4% Low Income Housing Tax Credits, which generated $5.3 million in private equity. The LIHTC program is considered the single largest source of funding for affordable housing in the U.S. for families, seniors and residents with special needs. NJHMFA is the state’s sole administrator of the program.
The Agency also provided nearly $12.5 million in construction and permanent financing of which $500,000 came from its Special Needs Housing Trust Fund and $375,000 through its Money Follows the Person Housing Partnership Program (MFPHPP), which provides subsidy to nonprofit and for-profit developers to set aside apartments for qualified individuals transitioning from nursing facilities to community settings.
The apartments are near the Freehold Raceway Mall, recreational areas such as Monmouth Battlefield State Park, transportation, medical facilities, retail, dining and other amenities on the Route 9 corridor. Residents may use the Monmouth County SCAT, which provides on-demand senior transportation services throughout the county.
The first residents moved into their new apartments in early January. Rents for the one-bedroom apartments range from $322 to $1,090, and from $1,079 to $1,309 for the two-bedroom apartments. The $18.8 million development also includes a fitness center, laundry rooms, community room, tech lounge, a community garden and several roof-decks. Rental information is available at www.wemrockseniorliving.com.
The Mental Health Association of Monmouth County will offer services in support of the formerly homeless residents such as needs assessments, referrals to treatment services and crisis intervention. In addition, CentraState Healthcare System's Mobile Health Awareness Van will provide health screenings and educational programming to advance resident health and encourage healthy lifestyles. Navicore Solutions, a national nonprofit in the field of personal financial counseling, will also hold seminars on-site on topics such as budgeting, identity theft and scams, and credit reporting.
In October, NJHMFA also joined PIRHL for a groundbreaking of the Apartments at Montgomery Crossing, which will provide 86 apartments affordable to families in Montgomery, Somerset County, and is financed in part by the Agency.
Founded in 2004, PIRHL is a full-service investor, developer, general contractor and owner of affordable and workforce family housing with offices in Hamilton, New Jersey, and Chicago. PIRHL’s approach leverages deep expertise in acquisitions and asset management, development and construction with strategic financial and local partnerships. To date, PIRHL has developed over 6,000 units in over 60 properties (including both new and renovation), serving the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, Northeast and Southeast regions of the U.S.
NJHMFA is a leader in the creation and rehabilitation of affordable housing opportunities for families, seniors and special needs residents statewide through its loan financing and bond programs; mortgage, down payment and closing costs assistance; and the award of federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits. NJHMFA does not rely on any direct funding from the New Jersey State Treasury to meet its core operating or administrative expenses. For more information on NJHMFA, visit njhousing.gov.