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For immediate release

For more information contact:
Rhonda Rosenberg, Director of Communications
King County Housing Authority
(206) 574-1185

King County Housing Authority Purchases Westminster Manor Apartments in Shoreline

Housing Authority preserves 60 units in building whose HUD contract was set to expire in 2013

May 27, 2010

As part of an ongoing effort to preserve affordable housing in King County, the King County Housing Authority, working in partnership with the city of Shoreline, has purchased the Westminster Manor Apartments, an apartment complex that houses low-income seniors and people with disabilities. A portion of the apartments at the property, located at 14701 Dayton Ave. N.  in Shoreline, are currently subsidized by the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development. The housing authority plans to protect the HUD Section 8 subsidy in those units.  The remaining units, which are rent restricted, will remain affordable to tenants earning 50 percent of the median income ($30,000 for a one-person household) or less.

“Preserving the affordably priced housing we have today is among the city’s top three affordable housing strategies,” said Mayor Keith McGlashan. “I am delighted that the city of Shoreline was able to be a partner in this effort.”

Westminster Manor, which is comprised of 60 units, was listed for sale on the open market and most likely would have been sold to private investors for conversion to market-rate apartments when the 40-year HUD regulatory agreement expired in 2013. Without the HUD restrictive covenants, rents could then be raised to market rate, currently estimated at $725 per month.  In the 24 units with “project-based” Section 8 rental assistance, residents pay about 30 percent of their income in rent, or approximately $223 per month.  Rents for the 36 non-subsidized apartments average $416 per month.

The average income of residents at Westminster Manor is $10,388, which makes it difficult, if not impossible, for them to afford market-based rents.

“Westminster Manor was in danger of being sold to a profit-motivated investor who would not have preserved the Section 8 contract with HUD,” said Stephen Norman, executive director of the King County Housing Authority.  “The Authority is pleased to be able to ensure that this community’s seniors, many of whom have lived at Westminster Manor for years, will be protected from unaffordable rents and possible homelessness.”

The Authority acquired the property for $2.75 million. KCHA assumed the existing mortgage of $166,000 and used a line of credit to finance the difference.

Because the complex is in good condition, KCHA plans to make only minor improvements such as installing low-flow toilets, completing elevator repairs, and adding accessibility-related enhancements.

Westminster Manor is the 31st property acquired by the Housing Authority as part of its long-term strategy to preserve existing affordable housing in King County.

KCHA administers a range of quality affordable rental and homeownership programs in the Puget Sound region.  The Authority serves about 18,000 families and elderly and disabled households on a daily basis.

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