Under Section 42, all assets must be accounted for, with the exception of assets that have been disposed of more than two years ago. Real estate is part of assets that must be counted. Since there are a few types of real estate, it can be confusing as to how to calculate it.
To determine the asset value of a normal sale of real estate sold at market value, the cash value of the property and the imputed value (if it exceeds $5,000) must be calculated. Once that is completed, the higher value is used. The cash value is determined by taking the actual value of the property and deducting the outstanding mortgage, closing costs, and any other applicable fees.
A household that is using their real estate as a rental property may apply to live in your community. When dealing with this scenario, two calculations must be done. The cash value must be determined as noted above. The second calculation that must be done is determining the monthly income that is received for rent. The actual income received is not what is included. Management must take that amount and subtract the mortgage and any applicable maintenance fees.
If real estate has been foreclosed upon, then it will not be considered in the asset calculations as the tenant will not be receiving income from the foreclosure. Keep in mind that until the foreclosure is complete, the real estate is sold at an auction, or the title has been transferred to another party, the real estate is still technically considered the tenant’s asset.
The real estate may have gone through a short sale and, if so, is typically not considered an asset. In most short sale situations, the owner will not be receiving income from the sale. However, if there is a difference in the sale that is in favor of the resident, that difference is counted as an asset, which must be verified by a third party if it is a HOME project and if it exceeds $5,000, for a LIHTC project.
One final note pertains to reverse mortgages. These are similar to loans since the income from this must be paid back. Keep in mind that the real estate would still need to be treated as an asset and calculated accordingly. The calculation for the cash value of this is done by taking the market value less the principal balance due on the reverse mortgage.
There are many scenarios when dealing with real estate, so please ensure you consult with your HFA or State Agency if you come across one of these examples.