26 CFR § 1.42-18 - Qualified contracts.

§ 1.42-18 Qualified contracts.

(a) Extended low-income housing commitment -

(1) In general. No credit under section 42(a) is allowed by reason of section 42 with respect to any building for the taxable year unless an extended low-income housing commitment (commitment) (as defined in section 42(h)(6)(B)) is in effect as of the end of such taxable year. A commitment must be in effect for the extended use period (as defined in paragraph (a)(1)(i) of this section).

(i) Extended use period. The term extended use period means the period beginning on the first day in the compliance period (as defined in section 42(i)(1)) on which the building is part of a qualified low-income housing project (as defined in section 42(g)(1)) and ending on the later of -

(A) The date specified by the low-income housing credit agency (Agency) in the commitment; or

(B) The date that is 15 years after the close of the compliance period.

(ii) Termination of extended use period. The extended use period for any building will terminate -

(A) On the date the building is acquired by foreclosure (or instrument in lieu of foreclosure) unless the Commissioner determines that such acquisition is part of an arrangement with the taxpayer (“the owner”) a purpose of which is to terminate such period; or

(B) On the last day of the one-year period beginning on the date (after the 14th year of the compliance period) on which the owner submits a written request to the Agency to find a person to acquire the owner's interest in the low-income portion of the building if the Agency is unable to present during such period a qualified contract for the acquisition of the low-income portion of the building by any person who will continue to operate such portion as a qualified low-income building (as defined in section 42(c)(2)).

(iii) Owner non-acceptance. If the Agency provides a qualified contract within the one-year period and the owner rejects or fails to act upon the contract, the building remains subject to the existing commitment.

(iv) Eviction, gross rent increase concerning existing low-income tenants not permitted. Prior to the close of the three year period following the termination of a commitment, no owner shall be permitted to evict or terminate the tenancy (other than for good cause) of an existing tenant of any low-income unit, or increase the gross rent for such unit in a manner or amount not otherwise permitted by section 42.

(2) Exception. Paragraph (a)(1)(ii)(B) of this section shall not apply to the extent more stringent requirements are provided in the commitment or under State law.

(b) Definitions. For purposes of this section, the following terms are defined:

(1) As provided by section 42(h)(6)(G)(iii), base calendar year means the calendar year with or within which the first taxable year of the credit period ends.

(2) The low-income portion of a building is the portion of the building equal to the applicable fraction (as defined in section 42(c)(1)(B)) specified in the commitment for the building.

(3) The fair market value of the non-low-income portion of the building is determined at the time of the Agency's offer of sale of the building to the general public. The fair market value of the non-low-income portion also includes the fair market value of the land underlying the entire building (both the non-low-income portion and the low-income portion). This valuation must take into account the existing and continuing requirements contained in the commitment for the building. The fair market value of the non-low-income portion also includes the fair market value of items of personal property not included in eligible basis under section 42(d) that convey under the contract with the building.

(4) Qualifying building costs include -

(i) Costs that are included in eligible basis of a low-income housing building under section 42(d) and that are included in the adjusted basis of depreciable property that is subject to section 168 and that is residential rental property for purposes of section 142(d) and § 1.103-8(b);

(ii) Costs that are included in eligible basis of a low-income housing building under section 42(d) and that are included in the adjusted basis of depreciable property that is subject to section 168 and that is used in a common area or is provided as a comparable amenity to all residential rental units in the building; and

(iii) Costs of the type described in paragraph (b)(4)(i) and (ii) of this section incurred after the first year of the low-income housing building's credit period under section 42(f).

(5) The qualified contract amount is the sum of the fair market value of the non-low-income portion of the building (within the meaning of section 42(h)(6)(F) and paragraph (b)(3) of this section) and the price for the low-income portion of the building (within the meaning of section 42(h)(6)(F) and paragraph (b)(2) of this section) as calculated in paragraph (c)(2) of this section. If this sum is not a multiple of $1,000, then when the Agency offers the building for sale to the general public, the Agency may round up the offering price to the next highest multiple of $1,000.

(c) Qualified contract purchase price formula -

(1) In general. For purposes of this section, qualified contract means a bona fide contract to acquire the building (within a reasonable period after the contract is entered into) for the qualified contract amount.

(i) Initial determination. The qualified contract amount is determined at the time of the Agency's offer of sale of the building to the general public.

(ii) Mandatory adjustment by the buyer and owner. The buyer and owner under a qualified contract must adjust the amount of the low-income portion of the qualified contract formula to reflect changes in the components of the qualified contract formula such as mortgage payments that reduce outstanding indebtedness between the time of the Agency's offer of sale to the general public and the building's actual sale closing date.

(iii) Optional adjustment by the Agency and owner. The Agency and owner may agree to adjust the fair market value of the non low-income portion of the building after the Agency's offer of sale of the building to the general public and before the close of the one-year period described in paragraph (a)(1)(ii)(B) of this section. If no agreement between the Agency and owner is reached, the fair market value of the non-low-income portion of the building determined at the time of the Agency's offer of sale of the building to the general public remains unchanged.

(2) Low-income portion amount. The low-income portion amount is an amount not less than the applicable fraction specified in the commitment, as defined in section 42(h)(6)(B)(i), multiplied by the total of -

(i) The outstanding indebtedness for the building (as defined in paragraph (c)(3) of this section); plus

(ii) The adjusted investor equity in the building for the calendar year (as defined in paragraph (c)(4) of this section); plus

(iii) Other capital contributions (as defined in paragraph (c)(5) of this section), not including any amounts described in paragraphs (c)(2)(i) and (ii) of this section; minus

(iv) Cash distributions from (or available for distribution from) the building (as defined in paragraph (c)(6) of this section).

(3) Outstanding indebtedness. For purposes of paragraph (c)(2)(i) of this section, outstanding indebtedness means the remaining stated principal balance (which is initially determined at the time of the Agency's offer of sale of the building to the general public) of any indebtedness secured by, or with respect to, the building that does not exceed the amount of qualifying building costs described in paragraph (b)(4) of this section. Thus, any refinancing indebtedness or additional mortgages in excess of such qualifying building costs are not outstanding indebtedness for purposes of section 42(h)(6)(F) and this section. Examples of outstanding indebtedness include certain mortgages and developer fee notes (excluding developer service costs not included in eligible basis). Outstanding indebtedness does not include debt used to finance nondepreciable land costs, syndication costs, legal and accounting costs, and operating deficit payments. Outstanding indebtedness includes only obligations that are indebtedness under general principles of Federal income tax law and that are actually paid to the lender upon the sale of the building or are assumed by the buyer as part of the sale of the building.

(4) Adjusted investor equity -

(i) Application of cost-of-living factor. For purposes of paragraph (c)(2)(ii) of this section, the adjusted investor equity for any calendar year equals the unadjusted investor equity, as described in paragraph (c)(4)(ii) of this section, multiplied by the qualified-contract cost-of-living adjustment for that year, as defined in paragraph (c)(4)(iii) of this section.

(ii) Unadjusted investor equity. For purposes of this paragraph (c)(4), unadjusted investor equity means the aggregate amount of cash invested by owners for qualifying building costs described in paragraph (b)(4)(i) and (ii) of this section. Thus, equity paid for land, credit adjuster payments, Agency low-income housing credit application and allocation fees, operating deficit contributions, and legal, syndication, and accounting costs all are examples of cost payments that do not qualify as unadjusted investor equity. Unadjusted investor equity takes an amount into account only to the extent that, as of the beginning of the low-income building's credit period (as defined in section 42(f)(1)), there existed an obligation to invest the amount. Unadjusted investor equity does not include amounts included in the calculation of outstanding indebtedness as defined in paragraph (c)(3) of this section.

(iii) Qualified-contract cost-of-living adjustment. For purposes of this paragraph (c)(4), the qualified-contract cost-of-living adjustment for a calendar year is the number that is computed under the general rule in paragraph (c)(4)(iv) of this section or a number that may be provided by the Commissioner as described in paragraph (c)(4)(v) of this section.

(iv) General rule. Except as provided in paragraph (c)(4)(v) of this section, the qualified-contract cost-of-living adjustment is the quotient of -

(A) The sum of the 12 monthly Consumer Price Index (CPI) values whose average is the CPI for the calendar year that precedes the calendar year in which the Agency offers the building for sale to the general public (The term “CPI for a calendar year” has the meaning given to it by section 1(f)(4) for purposes of computing annual inflation adjustments to the rate brackets.); divided by

(B) The sum of the 12 monthly CPI values whose average is the CPI for the base calendar year (within the meaning of section 1(f)(4)), unless that sum has been increased under paragraph (c)(4)(iii)(D) of this section.

(v) Provision by the Commissioner of the qualified-contract cost-of-living adjustment. The Commissioner may publish in the Internal Revenue Bulletin (see § 601.601(d)(2) of this chapter) a process pursuant to which the Internal Revenue Service will compute the qualified-contract cost-of-living adjustment for a calendar year and make available the results of that computation.

(vi) Methodology. The calculations in paragraph (c)(4)(iv) of this section are to be made in the following manner:

(A) The CPI data to be used for purposes of this paragraph (c)(4) are the not seasonally adjusted values of the CPI for all urban consumers. (The U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) sometimes refers to these values as “CPI-U.”) The BLS publishes the CPI data on-line (including a History Table that contains monthly CPI-U values for all years back to 1913). See www.BLS.gov/data.

(B) The quotient is to be carried out to 10 decimal places.

(C) The Agency may round adjusted investor equity to the nearest dollar.

(D) If the CPI for any calendar year (within the meaning of section 1(f)(4)) during the extended use period after the base calendar year exceeds by more than 5 percent the CPI for the preceding calendar year (within the meaning of section 1(f)(4)), then the sum described in paragraph (c)(4)(i)(B) is to be increased so that the excess is never taken into account under this paragraph (c)(4).

(vii) Example. The following example illustrates the calculations described in this paragraph (c)(4):

Example.
(i) Facts. Owner contributed $20,000,000 in equity to a building in 1997, which was the first year of the credit period for the building. In 2011, Owner requested Agency to find a buyer to purchase the building, and Agency offered the building for sale to the general public during 2011. The CPI for 1997 (within the meaning of section 1(f)(4)) is the average of the Consumer Price Index as of the close of the 12-month period ending on August 31, 1997. The sum of the CPI values for the twelve months from September 1996 through August 1997 is 1913.9. The CPI for 2010 (within the meaning of section 1(f)(4)) is the average of the Consumer Price Index as of the close of the 12-month period ending August 31, 2010. The sum of the CPI values for the twelve months from September 2009 through August 2010 is 2605.959. At no time during this period (after the base calendar year) did the CPI for any calendar year exceed the CPI for the preceding calendar year by more than 5 percent.

(ii) Determination of adjusted investor equity. The qualified-contract cost-of-living adjustment is 1.3615962171 (the quotient of 2605.959, divided by 1913.9). Owner's adjusted investor equity, therefore, is $27,231,924, which is $20,000,000, multiplied by 1.3615962171, rounded to the nearest dollar.

(5) Other capital contributions. For purposes of paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section, other capital contributions to a low-income building are qualifying building costs described in paragraph (b)(4)(ii) of this section paid or incurred by the owner of the low-income building other than amounts included in the calculation of outstanding indebtedness or adjusted investor equity as defined in this section. For example, other capital contributions may include amounts incurred to replace a furnace after the first year of a low-income housing credit building's credit period under section 42(f), provided any loan used to finance the replacement of the furnace is not secured by the furnace or the building. Other capital contributions do not include expenditures for land costs, operating deficit payments, credit adjuster payments, and payments for legal, syndication, and accounting costs.

(6) Cash distributions -

(i) In general. For purposes of paragraph (c)(2)(iv) of this section, the term cash distributions from (or available for distribution from) the building include -

(A) All distributions from the building to the owners or to persons whose relationship to the owner is described in section 267(b) or section 707(b)(1)), including distributions under section 301 (relating to distributions by a corporation), section 731 (relating to distributions by a partnership), or section 1368 (relating to distributions by an S corporation); and

(B) All cash and cash equivalents available for distribution at, or before, the time of sale, including, for example, reserve funds whether operating or replacement reserves, unless the reserve funds are legally required by mortgage restrictions, regulatory agreements, or third party contractual agreements to remain with the building following the sale.

(ii) Excess proceeds. For purposes of paragraph (c)(6)(i) of this section, proceeds from the refinancing of indebtedness or additional mortgages that are in excess of qualifying building costs are not considered cash available for distribution.

(iii) Anti-abuse rule. The Commissioner will interpret and apply the rules in this paragraph (c)(6) as necessary and appropriate to prevent manipulation of the qualified contract amount. For example, cash distributions include payments to owners or persons whose relation to owners is described in section 267(b) or section 707(b) for any operating expenses in excess of amounts reasonable under the circumstances.

(d) Administrative discretion and responsibilities of the Agency -

(1) In general. An Agency may exercise administrative discretion in evaluating and acting upon an owner's request to find a buyer to acquire the building. An Agency may establish reasonable requirements for written requests and may determine whether failure to follow one or more applicable requirements automatically prevents a purported written request from beginning the one-year period described in section 42(h)(6)(I). If the one-year-period has already begun, the Agency may determine whether failure to follow one or more requirements suspends the running of that period. Examples of Agency administrative discretion include, but are not limited to, the following:

(i) Concluding that the owner's request lacks essential information and denying the request until such information is provided.

(ii) Refusing to consider an owner's representations without substantiating documentation verified with the Agency's records.

(iii) Determining how many, if any, subsequent requests to find a buyer may be submitted if the owner has previously submitted a request for a qualified contract and then rejected or failed to act upon a qualified contract presented by the Agency.

(iv) Assessing and charging the owner certain administrative fees for the performance of services in obtaining a qualified contract (for example, real estate appraiser costs).

(v) Requiring all appraisers involved in the qualified contract process to be State certified general appraisers that are acceptable to the Agency.

(vi) Specifying other conditions applicable to the qualified contract consistent with section 42 and this section.

(2) Actual offer. Upon receipt of a written request from the owner to find a person to acquire the building, the Agency must offer the building for sale to the general public, based on reasonable efforts, at the determined qualified contract amount in order for the qualified contract to satisfy the requirements of this section unless the Agency has already identified a willing buyer who submitted a qualified contract to purchase the project.

(3) Debarment of certain appraisers. Agencies shall not utilize any individual or organization as an appraiser if that individual or organization is currently on any list for active suspension or revocation for performing appraisals in any State or is listed on the Excluded Parties Lists System (EPLS) maintained by the General Services Administration for the United States Government found at www.epls.gov.

(e) Effective date/applicability date. These regulations are applicable to owner requests to housing credit agencies on or after May 3, 2012 to obtain a qualified contract for the acquisition of a low-income housing credit building.

[T.D. 9587, 77 FR 26178, May 3, 2012]