MassHousing’s CommonWealth Builder

MassHousing’s CommonWealth Builder was implemented in 2021 as a program to spur the construction of single-family homes and condominiums that are affordable to households with moderate incomes, particularly in communities of color.

Homeownership in Worcester is expensive as the YTD Median Single-Family Home Price in Massachusetts is $391,000. As well, Worcester has a high rental community with around 60% of residents in the city renting allowing Worcester to have the 14th Lowest Homeownership rate for a mid-sized city.

By increasing homeownership in Worcester it brings a myriad of benefits to both homeowners and the community. At the Chamber, we support MassHousing’s CommonWealth Builder as it is a program that helps our community gain affordable homeownership options.

Eligibility for CommonWealth Builder

    • The development must add new units to the housing stock through new construction or adaptive reuse and must have a maximum of 20 units and at least 10 units designated for workforce housing affordability. (70%-120% AMI)
    • Affordability restrictions must be in place for at least 15 years.
    • The program provides subsidies of up to $250,000 per unit up to a maximum of $10 million per development.
    • Specifically for Gateway Cities like Worcester

Who the Program Helps

    • The program helps developers building condos that are accessible to low-to-moderate-income households and for people of color. Furthermore, the program helps create the affordable homeownership opportunities needed to mitigate housing insecurity for low- and moderate-income renters.
    • Homeownership can allow disadvantaged communities to gain generational wealth and more secure housing.

Workforce housing, a new initiative like the state’s CommonWealth Builders program can help introduce low-to-moderate income households to homeownership by assisting them with condo purchases.