Ballard Spahr is a national leader working at the forefront of the legal and business elements of affordable housing and community development. Our attorneys ensure that clients get the most benefit from transactions and help navigate shifts in the market, regulatory obligations, and government incentive programs.

The firm’s affordable housing lawyers have helped dozens of private developers, public housing authorities, investors, and other stakeholders negotiate and close many of the most complex affordable housing and community development transactions nationwide in recent years. Typically these transactions involve a variety of funding sources, including Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC), subsidies through the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program, public housing and Section 8, HUD-insured loans, tax-exempt bonds, state housing finance agency loan funds, and conventional financing.

Ballard Spahr has represented more than 75 public housing authorities, numerous other government agencies, and scores of private entities in affordable housing and community development projects over the past two decades. Our work has included mixed-finance and RAD transactions, regulatory compliance, corporate governance and board issues, and the full complement of construction- and development-related services—land use, property dispositions, entitlement process, contracting, environmental, and litigation in rare instances when it’s needed. This breadth of experience fuels our insight into real-world application of statutory and other requirements for government housing agencies, housing finance programs, and public-private alliances.

With a national presence and offices in key metro areas, we design and distill best practices from around the country to provide creative, successful solutions for clients. Decades of work in the affordable housing industry have enabled us to build strong relationships with key agencies, organizations, and people nationwide, including at Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in Washington, D.C., and regional offices. Our attorneys have led efforts to develop multiple new financing techniques and HUD approaches to affordable housing policies and development.

Issues and matters the Affordable Housing and Community Development Group handles include:

  • Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) Program, closing some of the first conversions in 2013 and, since then, dozens of transactions ranging from more straightforward conversions of a few dozen units to complex financings across multiple properties, involving thousands of units and up to $1.5 billion in financing
  • 9% and 4% LIHTC financings including those using products insured Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and Moving to Work (MTW) Program applications, allowing flexibilities to advance client priorities
  • Use of the Qualified Opportunity Zone (QOZ) program to finance residential rental housing
  • HUD legislative initiatives, including changes to the Section 8 program through the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act (HOTMA)
  • Demolition/disposition of public housing for portfolio repositioning and redevelopment purposes through various means including Section 18 of the U.S. Housing Act of 1937, HUD’s Streamlined Voluntary Conversion process and RAD
  • Mixed finance redevelopment, including the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative (CNI)
  • Collateralization of short-term bonds with federal funds (e.g., Capital Fund Financing Program (CFFP), Replacement Housing Factor funds, Ginnie Mae/GSE securities)
  • Energy conservation financing programs, including energy performance contracting (EPC), power purchase agreements (PPA), and community solar gardens
  • Combination of New Markets Tax Credits (NMTC) with public housing funds and/or LIHTC equity
  • Redevelopment efforts using project-based rental assistance (PBRA) and project-based vouchers (PBV)
  • Support in due diligence, pre-development, closing and conversion issues associated with various funding products including Freddie Mac’s TEL and Fannie Mae’s MTEB programs


Amy M. McClain
Tel 410.528.5592