MSI & Harry Silver Housing Company
Harry Silver Housing Company (“HSH”) is a 288 unit affordable cooperative at the intersection of Prospect Lefferts Gardens, Crown Heights and East Flatbush. HSH was built over 65 years ago as one of the first affordable cooperatives. Approximately 20 years ago, HSH decided it didn’t want to be supervised by New York State Homes and Community Renewal. As a result, HSH lost its city tax benefits and the Board of Directors began to self-manage. A $3 Million loan was received but the funds were spent without completing the necessary capital work.
A Community at a Crossroads: Engagement of MSI
By 2015 the corporation was on the brink of bankruptcy – unable to pay utility bills and more than $700,000 in tax abatements owed to Shareholders. The New York City Council voted to give the tax reduction back to HSH which resulted in a $600,000 savings every year.
MSI was hired and helped transition the community back under HCR supervision. An $8 Million short term loan was taken out to reimburse Shareholders and vendors for unpaid expenses. Harry Silver was finally able to balance its budget for the first time in many years.
MSI & Harry Silver: Building Towards the Future of Affordable Housing
Now that Harry Silver had the basic funds to pay its bills, MSI spent 2 years working with the Board of Directors to secure the future finances of Harry Silver. In 2019 the community was able to secure a $13 Million mortgage at 1.5% interest for 30 years. This included $7 Million for capital repairs that if not addressed posed health and safety issues – dangerous brick conditions, leaking roofs and leaning walls. In addition, Harry Silver agreed to stay affordable for another 30 years on the terms of the loan with New York State Housing Finance Agency and the Community Preservation Corporation.
Harry Silver Today with MSI’s View for its Future
The long-term project of securing this community for the future is now safely underway through the efforts of MSI and the Harry Silver Board. As a result of MSI’s preparedness, the necessary work continues despite the global pandemic and the city/state economic uncertainty. We are on schedule to have this work completed by 2021.