Nantucket: 100 Covenant Properties and Counting!

Covenant House with OwnerHousing Nantucket recently had the 100th covenant property transfer to a buyer since the inception of the program. The property was a 0.37 acre vacant lot located at 9 Field Avenue and it sold for $365,000. This is a huge milestone and there are now 267 people living in covenant homes. In 2001 a small group of people had the vision to create the program that enables a property owner, whose property could not otherwise be subdivided, to do so if a Nantucket Housing Needs Covenant is put on one of the units in perpetuity. One unit becomes restricted to year-round occupancy under certain income and asset limits and the other remains a market rate unit. Often a family will start out in a covenant house and then be able to move into a free-market home over time, thereby freeing up the covenant house for another family.
One of the successes of the program is that it has created more affordable year-round housing across the island (see map), and not all concentrated in one place. Each year the maximum re-sale price is adjusted based on a formula related to median area income and residential mortgage rates. At the inception of the program the maximum re-sale price was $406,162; the current maximum re-sale price is $888,515.
The sellers of the 100th property are long-time year round residents who had a dream as they approached retirement age. They wanted to buy a boat and sail around the world but also to be able keep their home on Nantucket. By creating a covenant lot, they were able to get the funding to realize their dream and, at the same time, help another year-round family have a permanent, stable home on Nantucket.
There is funding available, in the form of a no-interest loan, for sellers who would like to create a covenant property. Up to $10,000 is available to help pay for legal and surveying fees, permitting and other expenses related to the creation of a covenant property.
Thank you to Housing Nantucket – keep up the good work!