Housing lottery opens for first-time home buyers in Crown Heights and Bed-Stuy

affordable housing lottery for first-time home buyers
Eleven homes are being sold through a lottery for first-time home buyers in Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights.
Photo by Anna Bradley-Smith

An affordable housing lottery has opened for the sale of 11 two- and three-family houses in Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights. The lottery is specifically for first-time home buyers with households of between two and seven people earning between $104,500 and $227,630 a year.

The cheapest house in the lottery, priced at $653,800, is located at 1662 Bergen St., and households of three to seven people earning between $104,500 and $157,590 a year are eligible, according to the listing on NYC Housing Connect. At the other end of the scale, the most expensive house, at $939,099, is located at 821 Willoughby Ave. and is aimed at households of three to seven people earning between $159,100 and $227,630 a year.

home in lottery on Chauncey Street
One of the available homes, located at 278 Bainbridge St. Photo by Anna Bradley-Smith

The area where the 11 houses are located is roughly bounded by Malcolm X Boulevard to the west, Putnam Avenue to the north, Patchen Avenue to the east, and Bergen Street to the south.

The homes have been developed by housing development fund corporation Neighborhood Restore, which purchased the 11 lots from the city for $11 in 2021 as part of the city’s Fulton Park urban renewal project, according to tax records. The sites were all empty lots for at least a decade. The nonprofit, formed in 1999, is focused on rehabilitating, creating, and preserving affordable housing in the city and is behind the restoration of a number of buildings in central and east Brooklyn.

According to the 2021 transfer agreement between the nonprofit and the city, the houses must be affordable to those earning between 80 and 130 percent of the area median income. The lottery listing says one house is for a family earning 90 percent of AMI, while the remaining 10 are for those earning between 110 percent and 130 percent.

To be eligible, homeowners must live in the house as their primary residence and no one in the household can own or have previously purchased any interest in a residential property, NYC Housing Connect says.

Applicants can have assets totaling no more than $279,790 for the cheapest house and $294,055 for the most expensive, in addition to a 5 percent down payment, and they must qualify for New York State Affordable Housing Corporation’s grantee program.

The houses have been built through NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s Open Door Program, which “funds the new construction of cooperative and condominium buildings affordable to moderate and middle income households.”

first time homeowner lottery buildings
Each of the 11 homes, like the one at 179 Chauncey St., sits on what used to be an empty lot.
chauncey street lottery
The site of 179 Chauncey Street before it was purchased and developed.Photo courtesy of Christopher Bride/PropertyShark

The architect behind the homes is prolific Brooklyn architect Gerald J. Caliendo of Gerald J. Caliendo Architects. A visit Tuesday showed the two Chauncey Street and Bainbridge Street houses are almost complete but still surrounded by construction fences.

All three three-story buildings are almost identical in style, with a simple brown stucco facade on the upper stories, brown brick on the first level, and light beige cornices and lintels. The house on Malcolm X Boulevard wasn’t as far along as the others. A rendering on the fence shows it will be finished with an all-over brown brick facade and slightly more detailing, such as paneling and bracketed lintels — perhaps a nod to the area’s brownstone architecture.

The lottery notes that an informational session about the affordable homes will be held on October 26 and November 30 at 6 p.m. The meetings will be held virtually, and require registration here.

Applications for the affordable housing lottery must be submitted by December 14. Apply through New York City’s NYC Housing Connect.

This story first appeared on Brooklyn Paper’s sister site Brownstoner