Blog :: 08-2015

Summer Update: Burlington Minimum Housing Inspections


Burlington's minimum housing inspection rating system was the feature of a front-page story in Saturday August 15th's edition of the Burlington Free Press. As we blogged about back in January, the city has adopted a new rating system for rental properties in the city.

Properties can receive a certificate good for between 1 to 5 years of occupancy without requiring an additional inspection. A property with no violations receives a five year certificate. The cover story, authored by Zach Despart, serves to update the original story and offer some data in support of the new policy:

·         The city has performed 342 Inspections since January

·         40% received a five-year certificate

·         21% received a four-year certificate

·         7% received a three-year certificate

·         One property received a two-year certificate

·         111 Properties "had yet to address violations

Read the full story from the Burlington Free Press here


As always, please reach out to the LipVT team for all your real estate needs!


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    Possible Public Service Sharing in South Burlington

    The city of South Burlington is considering the formation of a shared system for public services with surrounding communities.  Officials are seeking to create a new municipality, the Central Chittenden County Public Services Authority.  This shared entity would consisting of many regional service providers including the Champlain Water District, the Chittenden Solid Waste District, the Chittenden County Transportation Authority, alongside combined fire departments and shared stormwater management equipment.  Economies of scale and pooled resources would allow both the quality of public services and the value provided to taxpayers to increase.  One major appeal to partnering communities would be the opportunity to utilize South Burlington's robust stormwater management system.

    South Burlington is currently pursuing the communities of Shelburne, Williston, and Colchester as potential members of the Central Chittenden County Public Services Authorty.  City Manager Kevin Dorn believes all four communities are ideal candidates for the new shared system.  "All of us in municpal government are confronted with the same challenges of making public services sustainable over time. ... It's incumbent upon city managers, town managers, Selectboards, and City Councils to look at how they can most efficiently provide the best value to taxpayers."

    To read Haley Dover's full report on this developing story, visit the Burlington Free Press HERE.

    For updates on this and other local real estate news, alongside the latest real estate listings in Burlington, visit HERE.


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      Important Changes to Fannie Mae

      In a recent release of the Selling Guide, the Federal Mortgage Association updated a number of important policies ranging from unreimbursed employee business expenses to custodian tracking of Fannie Mae loan numbers.  One very important regulation, which changed in the announcement, will make the buying process much more fluid for potential multi-family investors.

      Fannie Mae expanded the use of vested stock, bonds, and mutual funds toward down payments, closing costs, and required reserves for purchases.  This is a change to the previous policy which did not allow these less-liquid forms of assets to be used toward purchase requirements.  Under the current statutes, “one hundred percent of the value of the asset is allowed when determining available reserves.”  Furthermore, if the asset in use is over 20% in excess of the total necessary funding, no documentation of liquidation must be presented; if not meeting the excess requirement, the borrower must either present actual receipt of funds acquired in the sale or documentation of liquidation.

      To find more information on these updated policies, and more of the updates, see the Fannie Mae Selling Guide here.

      For more information on how to build your real estate investment portfolio, along with the latest listings in the Burlington area, visit today!


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        UPDATE: Burlington CEDO Releases Moran Plant Plan Details

        New details regarding the redevelopment of the Moran Power Plant have been released by The Burlington Community and Economic Development Office.  This version of plan details is more detailed than the previously released progress report by New Moran, Inc., providing key information about scheduling, cost estimates, funding, and market analysis.

        Included in this report is a complrehensive line-item budget of redevelopment costs.  In addition to the previously released total project cost estimate of $33.7 million, the budget breaks down as follows:

        $23.0 million Construction
        $1.9 million Design
        $3.1 million Soft Costs (e.g. marketing and permitting)
        $4.1 million Loan Interest and Insurance
        $1.3 million Contingency Costs


        Additionally, the line-item budget outlines tarket amounts to be raised from the five sources of funding for the project:

        $14.4 million Federal Tax Credits
        $11.0 million Charitable Donations
        $6.3 million Tax Increment Financing
        $1.1 million Low Interest Loans
        $540,000 Tenant Fit-Up Capital


        $14.4 million of funding, 43% of the total estimated project cost, will be sourced from the Federal Historic Tax Credit and the New Markets Tax Credit.

        New Moran, Inc. remains on schedule to complete the redevelopment project by fall 2017, and hopes to reach negotiation agreements with the City Council of Burlington by September of this year.

        Read's previous coverage of this story HERE.

        Stay tuned to Zach Despart's as he reports the ongoing developments of the New Moran Plant HERE.

        Visit HERE for more informtion on this and other pertinant news, alongside the latest real estate listings in the Burlington area.


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          UPDATE: New Moran, Inc. Releases Progress Report

          New Moran, Inc. released a progress report last week detailing the efforts to redevelop the former waterfront power plant.  The plan outlines a new marketplace along with a 1,500-capacity conference venue and additional office space.  The new development, operating as a year-round public amenity and economic driver, will bring an economic and commercial hub to Burlington’s beloved waterfront.

          The non-profit, headed by co-founder Tad Cooke, estimates the entire 68,000 square foot project to cost $33.7 million, with a construction cost of $25.6 million calculated by Boston firm Vermuleans.  According to the plan, New Moran, Inc. will secure funding from five sources:  tax credits (43%), charitable donations (33%), tax increment financing (19%), low interest loans (3%), and tenant fit-up capital (2%).

          As of the time the report was released, $1.85 million in donations or pledges had been raised of the $11 million fundraising goal.  A fundraising campaign is expected to begin this summer until June of next year.  New Moran expects to commence construction once the campaign is concluded in anticipation of a grand opening in fall 2017.

          Read Zach Despart’s full article in The Burlington Free Press HERE for more information on the recent progress release.

          For continuing updates on the project, visit New Moran’s website HERE at

          Be sure to visit HERE for more updates on this story, along with the latest Burlington real estate listings.


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