Housing is part of any community’s basic public infrastructure and represents a major investment by both public and private partners. At its best, affordable housing development is focused on people first, incorporates a holistic approach, and takes the long view.
Oystertree Consulting was founded to help affordable housing owners, developers and funding agencies to use green building and sustainability as tools to achieve long term affordable housing goals. We specialize in working with public agencies to incorporate the benefits of sustainability at the agency level, though we also work with private and nonprofit owners and developers.
Oystertree provides the following core services to our clients:
- • Affordable Housing & Community Development
- • Green Building & Sustainability
- • Policy Development & Research
Affordable Housing & Community Development
Oystertree provides traditional development consulting services for a variety of mixed-finance and traditionally-funded affordable housing and community development projects.
We work with both traditional and innovative sources of housing finance, including private debt and equity and the following public sources: HOPE VI, HOME CDBG, Section 202, Low Income Housing Tax Credits, New Markets Tax Credits, PHA Energy Performance Contracts, PHA Capital and Operating Funds, project-based Section 8, as well as state and local funding sources.
Green Building & Sustainability
Public agencies across the country have successfully implemented green affordable housing projects, resulting in reduced energy and water use, improved indoor air quality, and better access to transit and other community resources.
Oystertree specializes in agency-wide assessments to identify existing competencies, areas of additional opportunity, and potential synergies across departments. This review starts with data collection but focuses on the people: from board members and commissioners to front line staff, maintenance personnel, and ultimately residents themselves. We also address the need for legal counsel review (where applicable), and a proactive role for independent public housing authorities in citywide public sector sustainability programs. Additionally, we have worked extensively with national green building standards such as LEED for Homes, Enterprise Green Communities, and Energy Star, and we are trained to conduct on-site performance verification of projects during and after construction.
Policy Development & Research
Today, it is as important as ever to evaluate public policies related to housing and community development, identify shortcomings, and communicate successes. Given current changes in housing markets, this is true for traditional funding sources as well as innovative financing strategies and green building incentives.
Because Oystertree has project-level expertise and brings agency-wide perspective, we are well-suited to undertake policy analysis and development. Our experience in this area includes policy development and advice for government, nonprofit and for-profit entities, as well as service on numerous boards and committees involved in housing policy, both locally and nationally. We can perform effective data collection, program assessment and policy evaluation for new and existing policies and programs.