The national nonprofit Preservation of Affordable Housing has bought two affordable housing buildings in Elgin, with plans to improve them and add programming for residents, officials said.
The acquisition of Burnham Manor, 1350 Fleetwood Drive, and the Burnham Schoolhouse Apartments, 260 Center St., was finalized last month, said Molly Ekerdt, the company's vice president of development. Burnham Manor has 100 senior apartments, and Burnham Schoolhouse Apartments has 27 units from studios to three-bedrooms.
"These properties are hard to come by, and we have wanted to be out of the city and in the suburbs," Ekerdt said about the nonprofit based in Boston and with offices in Chicago and Washington, D.C. "We are excited to be expanding our footprint."
Burnham Manor was sold for $9.12 million and Burnham Schoolhouse Apartments was sold for just over $2 million, according to the Kane County recorder's office.
Along with the two Elgin properties, the nonprofit bought two properties in Chicago's Austin neighborhood last month. All four "were owned by various LLC entities made up of various investors" and managed by Burnham Management Co. in Chicago, Ekerdt said.
The Elgin properties are part of the federal housing choice voucher program, commonly known as Section 8. The buildings are "well-preserved" and the plan is to improve heating and mechanical systems, and implement efficient plumbing, lighting and roofing in the next year, she said.
The longtime manager of both properties agreed to continue in the job, Ekerdt said. The agency also plans to hire a full-time community impact coordinator, shared between the two properties, hopefully this summer, she said. That person will work with neighborhood organizations and service providers to provide support and programming for residents on a variety of topics, such as finances, health and children's issues, she said.
Burnham Manor was built in the 1980s. Burnham Schoolhouse Apartments is in the former Abby C. Wing School building dating back to 1899; it was converted into apartments in the 1980s. The latter "had some incidents in the past," she said, such as a triple homicide in 1999, "but it's a very stable property now."
Preservation of Affordable Housing also is buying six properties from the YMCA of Metro Chicago in Chicago, South Chicago and Harvey, Ekerdt said. That expands its portfolio to more than 1,700 affordable apartments in the Chicago area and more than 12,000 affordable apartments in 11 states.
"We hope that as a nonprofit buyer, we are able to invest heavily in the quality of the buildings and the quality of services, and keep these buildings as good neighbors for the city of Elgin for a long time," she said.