All questions must be submitted to IAH@huduser.gov. Questions and answers will be posted to this page in a timely manner.

Most Recent Questions

Q: Is it a requirement to submit a revised pro forma?

A: No, it is not a requirement. However, it is assumed that a revised financial analysis is performed and is included in one of the team’s presentation slides.

Q: What’s the number of 1BR and 2BR units at Edgar Bois Terrace?

A: There are 20 1BR units at Edgar Bois Terrace. There are no 2BR units.

Q: The total budget for the project (exclusive of land costs) is thirty million dollars ($30,000,000). To be clear, is that funding which Dover Housing Authority has in reserves dedicated to this project? Or is that a funding ceiling for which we shouldn’t plan to exceed in total development costs? Would things like LIHTC (as suggested in the prompt) be used to get to $30,000,000 proposed budget or would it be used to exceed the already available $30,000,000?

A: The $30M is money that would have to be raised from sources. The DHA currently has $500,000 in reserves, which is a potential source. The remaining would have to be raised.


Q: Have the Niles Park residences been renovated since they were built in 1962?

A: The only renovations have been the roofs.

Q: If we are replacing some of the existing Niles Park residences, can we expand the budget beyond the $30 million?

A: Yes, the budget can be expanded and additional units over and above 154 can be planned as long as financing is provided. However a 1 for 1 ratio must be maintained, i.e., if 183 units are take off line, 183 units would need to be developed as replacements.

Q: If a funding program requires compliance with the Uniform Relocation Act, can the Dover Housing Authority be expected to provide relocation funding to residents displaced from Central and Walden Towers and relocated to the target site or would this funding be considered inclusive within the $30,000,000 available budget?

A: For the purposes of this competition, teams are not required to consider relocation costs.

Q: Can we underwrite income from laundry and parking?

A: Both these are subject to LIHTC regulation. Therefore, if LIHTC financing is included, laundry income can be used to underwrite; parking should be in the Qualified Basis for LIHTC purposes so parking fees will not be available for underwriting expenses.

Q: Should the social services provided on-site be fully supported by the building's income, or can we assume that we can find external funding via partnerships?

A: Social services should be supported by the project income. However, we encourage innovation, which may include partnerships.

Q: On page 4 of the Planning and Design Criteria under Financial Considerations, it says we can propose using "LIHTC (both 4% and 9%). Should we assume HUD isn't requiring applicants to propose a solution that involves both a 4% bond/LIHTC execution and a 9% LIHTC execution, that it is either one or the other?

A: Typically, LIHTC financial support should rely upon either 4% or 9% but not both. However, you are encouraged to be as innovative as possible in all aspects of your solution, including financing.

Q: If we assume a RAD conversion, can we underwrite rents to 110% of HUD Fair Market Rents in Dover?

A: RAD conversion should include an analysis of the RAD rents available, which is a separate analysis from the HUD Fair Market rents—and perhaps lower. Please be aware the intersection of RAD and LIHTC results in double regulation—the project has to comply with HUD RAD regulations on the one hand and IRS regulations pursuant to the LIHTC program. Please note when these regulations conflict or overlap, the LIHTC regulations always win for compliance purposes except for the RAD rents.

Q: Must all of the 154 units be affordable or can there be a mix of market rate units in the 154?

A: There must be a minimum of 154 affordable units.

Q: We are having some difficulty with cells in the Pro Forma Template.

A: A corrected Pro Forma Template has been posted and is now available.

Q: Can we add additional rows?

A: Yes, the updated template will allow you to add rows.

Q: Are we able to use the proceeds from the sale of the Central and Waldron Towers to finance the construction of the replacement units on the competition site?

A: Yes, Central and Waldron Towers can be disposed of through a sale into the private sector and the proceeds may be used in the financing plan for the new construction.

Q: Can we convert the adjacent Edgar Bois Terrace and Niles Street developments into RAD?

A: Yes, Edgar Bois Terrace, Niles and Union Court apartments are eligible for conversion under RAD. These units consist of 90 units (EBT consists of 20 1 BR units; Niles consists of 36 1 BR units and 4 2-BR units for a total of 40 units; and, Union Court consists of 30 1-BR units). Note that RAD requirements would apply, including one to one replacement.

Q: Does water flow through Cricket Brook? Year round or seasonally? Or is it more of an irrigation ditch?

A: Water flows through Cricket Brook year round.

Q: The parcel is 9 acres but calls for 2 or 2.5 acres of development on buildable land- are there certain boundaries that can/cannot be built on?

A: Please refer to Zoning requirements. Also note that zoning variances can be applied for with adequate and compelling justification.

Q: Can Union Street and Niles Drive be redesigned where they exist within the parcel?

A: Yes, vehicular circulation can be modified.

Q: What are maintenance shops?

A: Maintenance shops are spaces to be used by operations and maintenance personnel to store equipment and perform various O&M tasks.

Q: Do you require 20 washers and 20 driers or 10 washers and 10 driers?

A: Per the design program, for 154 units, the requirement is for a total of 20 washers and 20 dryers.

Q: What is a sliding scale based on rent of 30% of net adjusted income?

A: Rent is calculated on a resident’s ability to pay ensuring that rent does not exceed 30% of the resident’s net adjusted income.

Q: What is the unit mix for the 40 units at Niles Park Residence?

A: The 40 units at Niles Park include 36 one-BR apartments and 4 two-BR apartments.

Q: Are we to assume the existing buildings on the lot are to remain or for the purposes of this competition are we starting with a clean site?

A: The answer to this question is contained on page 3 of the Planning & Design Criteria, “The site containing these two properties and the buildable area between them is indicated by the City of Dover to be a single parcel, so the intent is to dramatically increase the density of the site, while not rehabbing the current buildings. The designs may optionally include removal of a portion of the Niles Park residences, if those dwellings are numerically replaced within the new development.”

Q: What is the resident mix of senior and people with disabilities?

A: This is not known and is dependent upon applicants.

Q: Do we know if the disabilities are more physical or emotional?

A: This is unknown.

Q: Do we only have to provide the 5% minimum of accessible dwelling units, or are there more residents that require accessible units?

A: Please refer to the applicable codes and regulations; and, use your judgment.

Q: We were also wondering if you could provide the topography for the full site-the topographic map currently cuts off a bit of the Niles Park area.

A: We do not have any maps in addition to the topos that are currently on the competition website.

Q: What are the expected 2018 CHAP rents (Commitment for Housing Assistance Payment) for a Whittier Falls RAD development after conversion?

A: The 2018 Contract Rents, also known as CHAP rents, are based on unit size and utility allowances. One bedroom rent—Contract Rent is $593 per month plus $55 utility allowance, and two bedroom Contract Rent is $754 per month plus $73 utility allowance. Experience over the past 3 funding cycles indicate CHAP rents are increasing at a rate of 2% per annum.

Q: Do all the buildings have to meet the common area requirements or can all of the common area requirements be located in a single building?

A: Common areas are specified for the entire 154-unit project, not for individual buildings. However, all common areas should be located so as to be conveniently accessible to all residents.

Q: When can we expect to receive the pro forma template that is to be provided?

A: The Pro Forma Template will be released in early January. Although you must use the template in your Phase I submission, you can certainly begin to analyze your sources and uses as you begin to develop your solution.

Q: The packet says that the new project will consist of 154 units. Are we limited to that number of units, or do we have the flexibility to propose adding more units?

A: You may increase the number of units if you are able to comply with zoning and other considerations. Since the site includes existing units on the same parcel, “other considerations” include, but are not limited to, integration/demolition of existing units with the new units on the same parcel of land.

Q: Is the $30 million budget exclusively for the construction of 154 units? Or would that also include other amenities and possible other uses? Are we able to exceed this amount if we are able to locate the appropriate sources of funding?

A: The $30 million budget includes construction of units and amenities/other uses. You may exceed the $30 million budget if you are able to locate additional sources of funding.

Q: The competition Guidelines state that a pro forma template will be provided. When the pro forma template might be released?

A: The Pro Forma Template will be released in early January. Although you must use the template in your Phase I submission, you can certainly begin to analyze your sources and uses as you begin to develop your solution.

Q: I am currently enrolled in a Certificate program of a Graduate School of a certified university. Am I eligible to compete?

A: Unfortunately, no. Per the eligibility requirements, all team members must be pursuing a Graduate degree.

Q: If the competition team has less than five members (i.e., four members) do three members still have to be US citizens or will the number be less?

A: The requirement would still be for three members to be US citizens or permanent residents.

Q: Can a faculty advisor advise more than one team?

A: Yes, a faculty advisor may work with multiple teams.

Q: May undergraduate students in engineering compete in the IAH competition?

A: No, the competition is open only to graduate students. However, teams comprising engineering students would be fine, but must be at the graduate level.

Q: Is the following eligibility requirement compulsory: "Team leaders must be US citizens or permanent residents; teams must comprise at least three members who are US citizens or permanent residents. The remaining team members may be international students."

A: Yes. At least three members of the team, including the Team Leader, must be US citizens or permanent residents.

Q: Is a part-time graduate student eligible to participate?

A: Yes, team members must be current full or part time graduate students.

Q: Does the requirement for at least three disciplines include Bachelor's Degree background?

A: No. Teams must include members who are pursuing graduate degrees in three different disciplines, at least one of which must be a non-design-related discipline.

Q: Is it acceptable to work with a local architect to develop our schematics?

A: No, the team must comprise ONLY graduate students. The faculty advisor, who is not a member of the team, can provide appropriate guidance as necessary.

Q: Are recent grads eligible to join teams participating in the competition?

A: All team members must be currently enrolled in a graduate degree program to be eligible to compete.

Q: Are DWG or other kinds of files for the competition available?

A: Unfortunately, no. The only files are the PDFs that are linked through the website.

Q: What are the team and individual eligibility requirements?

A: All team members must be enrolled in a graduate degree program from an accredited educational institution in the United States. All teams must be made up of no less than three and no more than five members. Teams must comprise at least three citizens or permanent residents of the United States, including the team leader. The remaining members may be international students.

Q: What constitutes a multidisciplinary team?

A: Each team must have three to five members representing at least three disciplines that grant three different degrees, one of which must be a non-design-related discipline. For example, teams can comprise graduate students in architecture, planning, public policy, finance, business administration, and real estate development. Team members should be following degrees that will inform and enhance the team’s solution.

Q: As university faculty, can we integrate this competition into our semester curriculum?

A: Yes, we encourage connecting the competition to course content. In fact, last year's winning team was a class project, as were finalists in all four years of the competition.

Q: Are international students eligible to compete in IAH 2018?

A: Yes, all international students, including those on student visas, are eligible to compete in IAH 2018. However, team leaders must be citizens or permanent residents of the US, and all teams must be comprised of at least three citizens or permanent residents of the US. The remaining team members may be international students. International students are not eligible to receive prize money.

Q: Are undergraduate students eligible to participate in IAH 2018?

A: No, all team members must be currently enrolled in a degree-conferring graduate program. As this is an annual competition, we encourage undergraduates to think about participating in the future when in graduate school.

Q: Can one university field multiple teams?

A: Yes, there is no limit to the number of teams that can compete from a single university.

Q: May a team include members from more than one university?

A: Yes, as long as at least three disciplines are represented, team members can be from different schools.

Q: Can a PhD student serve as a faculty advisor?

A: Yes, a PhD student may serve as the advisor. The advisor's role is to support the team and provide guidance, as needed. There are no other specific requirements, except that the advisor may not participate as a full member of the team.

Q: Can we view the winning projects from past IAH competitions?

A: Detailed information on past winners, and a video of the 2017 final project presentations in DC can be found here.

Q: Can you provide additional information on the competition program?

A: The detailed program will be released on December 12, 2017 immediately after close of registration. We cannot provide any additional information until that time. However, since there is no cost to register, we would encourage you to create a team in any case.

Q: Our university does not have an architecture program. Would we need an architecture student as a part of the team?

A: The guidelines state that each team must have members representing at least three disciplines that grant three different degrees, at least one of which must be a non-design-related discipline. It is up to each team to determine its makeup. You are free to enlist members from other schools and the TeamFinder link on the competition homepage can be an aid to locating additional team members.

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