CREI Holdings Secures $41 Million Loan For Affordable/Workforce Housing In Miami-Dade County

Li'l Abner II Apartments. Credit: CREI Holdings.

Miami-based development firm CREI Holdings has secured a $41 million loan from Lument for the refinancing of Li’l Abner II apartments, completed in April 2023 in the city of Sweetwater. The transaction closed on December 29, 2023, and was led by Marc Suarez, a managing director at Lument.

Designed by Burgos Lanza Architects and Planners, an architectural firm based in Coral Gables, the 8-story building is situated adjacent to its 87-unit sibling, Li’l Abner I. Li’l Abner II consists of 244 one- and two-bedroom units dedicated to affordable and workforce housing. Among these, 40 percent cater to low-income seniors, while the remainder is allocated to residents earning up to 120 percent of the area’s median income. The building is close to full occupancy.

Li’l Abner II Apartments. Credit: CREI Holdings.

“We’re deeply appreciative of the dedication shown by Marc and the Lument team in finalizing this loan before the year’s end,” said Raul Rodriguez, Managing Member of CREI Holdings. “The creation of affordable and workforce housing has become increasingly challenging, and we extend our gratitude to Miami-Dade County for its crucial support, which has played a role in facilitating this refinancing. It is essential for both the public and private sectors to collaborate in addressing the affordable housing crisis. With each sector fulfilling its responsibilities, there’s no reason why we cannot overcome this challenge together.”
According to recent data from the University of Florida’s Shimberg Center for Housing Studies, Miami-Dade County’s affordable housing shortage disproportionately affects renters and frontline workers. The study shows that households in the county with incomes under $75,000 face significant housing cost burdens. About half of all Miami-Dade households spend over 30% of their income on housing, a percentage that rises to three-quarters for those earning below $75,000 annually.
The impact is most pronounced among renters with modest incomes. An alarming 90% of renters earning less than $50,000 are cost-burdened. The county currently faces a shortfall of 90,181 affordable and available rental units for those earning below 80% of the area median income. If no additional affordable units are introduced, this gap is projected to expand to nearly 116,000 units by 2030, as per the UF study.

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