| (I) An Excel spreadsheet listing each Unit for which
data was obtained to meet the minimum sample size requirement of a
Unit Type, the number of bedrooms, bathrooms and square footage for
each Unit, the household's move-in date, the utility usage (e.g.,
actual kilowatt usage for electricity) for each month of the 12 month
period for each Unit for which data was obtained, and the Component
Charges in place at the time of the submission;
(II) All documentation obtained from the Utility Provider
(or billing entity for the utility provider) and/or copies of actual
utility bills gathered from the residents, including all usage data
not needed to meet the minimum sample size requirement and any written
correspondence from the utility provider;
(III) The rent roll showing occupancy as of the end
of the month for the month in which the data was requested from the
utility provider; and
(IV) Documentation of the current Utility Allowance
used by the Development.
(iii) Upon receipt of the required information, the
Department will determine if the Development Owner has provided the
minimum information necessary to calculate an allowance using the
Actual Use Method. If so, the Department shall calculate the Utility
Allowance for each bedroom size using the guidelines described in
subclauses (I) - (V) of this clause;
(I) If data is obtained for more than the sample requirement
for the Unit Type, all data will be used to calculate the allowance;
(II) If more than 12 months of data is provided for
any Unit, only the data for the most current 12 will be averaged;
(III) The allowance will be calculated by multiplying
the average units of measure for the applicable utility (i.e., kilowatts
over the last 12 months by the current rate) for all Unit Types within
that bedroom size. For example, if sufficient data is supplied for
18 two bedroom/one bath Units, and 12 two bedroom/two bath Units,
the data for all 30 Units will be averaged to calculate the allowance
for all two bedroom Units;
(IV) The allowance will be rounded up to the next whole
dollar amount. If allowances are calculated for different utilities,
each utility's allowance will be rounded up to the next whole dollar
amount and then added together for the total allowance; and
(V) If the data submitted indicates zero usage for
any month, the data for that Unit will not be used to calculate the
(iv) The Department will complete its evaluation and
calculation within 45 days of receipt of all the information requested
in clause (ii) of this subparagraph;
(d) In accordance with 24 CFR §§92.252 and
93.302, for an MFDL in which the Department is the funding source,
the Utility Allowance will be established in the following manner:
(1) For Developments that, as a result of funding,
must calculate the Utility Allowance under HUD Multifamily Notice
H-2015-4, as revised from time to time, the applicable Utility Allowance
for all rent restricted Units in the building is the applicable Utility
Allowance calculated under that Notice. No other utility method described
in this section can be used.
(2) Other Buildings. The Utility Allowance may be initiated
by the Owner using the methodologies described in subsection (c)(3)(B),
(C), (D), or (E) of this section related to Methods.
(3) If a request is not received by October 1st, the
Department will calculate the Utility Allowance using the HUD Utility
Schedule Model. For property specific data, the Department will use:
(A) The information submitted in the Annual Owner's
(B) Entrance Interview Questionnaires submitted with
prior onsite reviews; or
(C) The owner may be contacted and required to complete
the Utility Allowance Questionnaire. In such case, a five day period
will be provided to return the completed questionnaire.
(D) Utilities will be evaluated in the following manner:
(i) For regulated utilities, the Department will contact
the Utility Provider directly and apply the Component Charges in effect
no later than 60 days before the allowance will be effective.
(ii) For deregulated utilities:
(I) The Department will use the Power to Choose website
and search available Utility Providers by ZIP code;
(II) The plan chosen will be the median cost per kWh
based on average price per kWh for the average monthly use of 1000
kWh of all available plans; and
(III) The actual Component Charges from the plan chosen
in effect no later than 60 days before the allowance will be effective
will be entered into the Model.
(E) The Department will notify the Owner contact in
CMTS of the new allowance and provide the backup for how the allowance
was calculated. The owner will be provided a five day period to review
the Department's calculation and note any errors. Only errors related
to the physical characteristics of the building(s) and utilities paid
by the residents will be reconsidered; the utility plan and Utility
Provider selected by the Department and Component Charges used in
calculating the allowance will not be changed. During this five day
period, the owner also has the opportunity to submit documentation
and request use of any of the available Green Discounts.
(F) The allowance must be implemented for rent due
in all program units thirty days after the Department notifies the
Owner of the allowance.
(4) HTC Buildings in which there are units under an
MFDL program are considered HUD-Regulated buildings and the applicable
Utility Allowance for all rent restricted Units in the building is
the Utility Allowance calculated under the MFDL program. No other
utility method described in this section can be used by HUD-regulated
buildings. If the Department is not the awarding jurisdiction, Owners
are required to obtain the Utility Allowance established by the awarding
jurisdiction, and to document all efforts to obtain such allowance
to evidence due diligence in the event that the jurisdiction is nonresponsive.
In such an event, provided that, sufficient evidence of due diligence
is demonstrated, the Department, in its sole discretion, may allow
for the use of the methods described in subsection (c)(3)(A), (B),
(C), or (D) of this section related to Methods to calculate and establish
its utility allowance.
(e) Acceptable Documentation. For the Methods where
utility specific information is required to calculate the allowance
(e.g., base charges, cost per unit of measure, taxes) Owners should
obtain documentation directly from the Utility Provider and/or Regulating
State Agency. Any Component Charges related to the utility that are
published by the Utility Provider and/or Regulating State Agency must
be included. In the case where a utility is billed to the Owner of
the building(s) and the Owner is billing residents through a third
party billing company, the Component Charges published by the Utility
Provider and not the third party billing company will be used.
(f) Changes in the Utility Allowance. An Owner may
not change Utility Allowance methods, start or stop charging residents
for a utility without prior written approval from the Department.
Example 614(5): A Housing Tax Credit Development has been paying for
water and sewer since the beginning of the Compliance Period. In year
eight, the Owner decides to require residents to pay for water and
sewer. Prior written approval from the Department is required. Any
such request must include the Utility Allowance Questionnaire found
on the Department's website and supporting documentation.
(1) The Department will review all requests, with the
exception of the methodology prescribed in subsection (c)(3)(E) of
this section related to Methods, within 90 days of the receipt of
(2) If the Owner fails to post the notice to the residents
and simultaneously submit the request to the Department by the beginning
of the 90 day period, the Department's approval or denial will be
delayed for up to 90 days after Department notification. Example 614(6):
The Owner has chosen to calculate the electric portion of the Utility
Allowance using the written local estimate. The annual letter is dated
July 5, 2014, and the notice to the residents was posted in the leasing
office on July 5, 2014. However, the Owner failed to submit the request
to the Department for review until September 15, 2014. Although the
Notice to the Residents was dated the date of the letter from the
utility provider, the Department was not provided the full 90 days
for review. As a result, the allowance cannot be implemented by the
owner until approved by the Department.
(3) Effective dates. If the Owner uses the methodologies
as described in subsection (c)(3)(A) of this section related to Methods,
any changes to the allowance can be implemented immediately, but must
be implemented for rent due at least 90 days after the change. For
methodologies as described in subsection (c)(3)(B), (C), (D) and (E)
of this section related to Methods, the allowance cannot be implemented
until the estimate is submitted to the Department and is made available
to the residents by posting in a common area of the leasing office
at the Development. This action must be taken by the beginning of
the 90 day period in which the Owner intends to implement the Utility
Allowance. Nothing in this section prohibits an Owner from reducing
a resident's rent prior to the end of the 90 day period when the proposed
allowance would result in a gross rent issue.
(g) Requirements for Annual Review.
(1) RHS and HUD-Regulated Buildings. Owners must demonstrate
that the utility allowance has been reviewed annually and in accordance
with the RHS or HUD regulations.
(2) Buildings using the PHA Allowance. Owners are responsible
for periodically determining if the applicable PHA released an updated
schedule to ensure timely implementation. When the allowance changes
or a new allowance is made available by the PHA, it can be implemented
immediately, but must be implemented for rent due 90 days after the
PHA releases an updated scheduled.
(3) Written Local Estimate, HUD Utility Model Schedule
and Energy Consumption Model. Owners must update the allowance once
a calendar year. The update and all back up documentation required
by the method must be submitted to the Department no later than October
1st of each year. However, Owners are encouraged to submit prior to
the deadline to ensure the Department has time to review. At the same
time the request is submitted to the Department, the Owner must post,
at the Development, the Utility Allowance estimate in a common area
of the leasing office where such notice is unobstructed and visible
in plain sight. The Department will review the request for compliance
with all applicable requirements and reasonableness. If, in comparison
to other approved Utility Allowances for properties of similar size,
construction and population in the same geographic area, the allowance
does not appear reasonable or appears understated, the Department
may require additional support and/or deny the request.
(4) Actual Use Method. Owners must update the allowance
once a calendar year. The update and all back up documentation required
by the method must be submitted to the Department no later than August
1st of each year. However, Owners are encouraged to submit prior to
the deadline to ensure the Department has time to review.
(h) For Owners participating in the Department's Section
811 Project Rental Assistance (PRA) Program, the Department will establish
the Utility Allowance for all 811 units. On an annual basis, the Department
will calculate a Utility Allowance and provide the Owner with a property-specific
rent schedule containing the approved Utility Allowance. The allowance
listed on the rent schedule only applies to 811 PRA units, not the
entire building, and is the only allowance approved for use on 811
(i) Combining Methods. In general, Owners may combine
any methodology described in this section for each utility service
type paid directly by the resident and not by or through the Owner
of the building (e.g., electric, gas). For example, if residents are
responsible for electricity and gas, an Owner may use the appropriate
PHA allowance to determine the gas portion of the allowance and use
the Actual Use Method to determine the electric portion of the allowance.
RHS and certain HUD-Regulated buildings (e.g., buildings with HOME/
TCAP RF funds) are not allowed to combine methodologies.
(j) The Owner shall maintain and make available for
inspection by the resident all documentation, including, but not limited
to, the data, underlying assumptions and methodology that was used
to calculate the allowance. Records shall be made available at the
resident manager's office during reasonable business hours or, if
there is no resident manager, at the dwelling Unit of the resident
at the convenience of both the Owner and resident.
(k) Utility Allowances for Applications.
(1) If the application includes RHS assisted buildings
or tenants, the utility allowance is prescribed by the RHS program.
No other method is allowed.
(2) If the application includes HUD-Regulated buildings
for HUD programs other than an MFDL program the applicable Utility
Allowance for all rent restricted Units in the building is the applicable
HUD Utility Allowance. No other utility method is allowed.