Voluntary Inclusionary Housing

In areas where the Voluntary Inclusionary Housing (VIH) Program, enacted in 1987, is applicable (R-10 Districts, IH Designated Areas and Special Districts), a development may receive a density bonus in return for the new construction, substantial rehabilitation, or preservation of permanently affordable housing.

The density bonus generated can be utilized to increase residential floor area on-site and/or off-site. An on-site project is one where the density bonus is located in the same building as the affordable units that generate the bonus. An off-site project is one where the density bonus is not located in the same building as the affordable units that generate the bonus. For off-site projects, the density bonus must be located on a zoning lot either: 1) within the same Community District as the zoning lot containing the affordable units, or 2) within an adjacent Community District and within ½ mile from the zoning lot that contains the affordable units.

In R10 Districts, the amount of density bonus that a project produces varies by type of construction (new construction, substantial rehabilitation and preservation) and funding source (public vs. private financing). While in IH Designated areas and Special Districts, density ratios are the same regardless of type and funding source. Generally speaking, Inclusionary units must be affordable to low income households earning up to 80% of Area Median Income (AMI) and rents capped at 30% of 80% of AMI. However, in some Special Districts, depending on the district, a density bonus may be granted for moderate and/or middle income units (125% - 175% AMI).

VIH Development Process

  • Applicants must submit a completed Inclusionary Housing Program Affordable Housing Plan Application and Checklist and all information required as stated on the Inclusionary Housing Program Application Checklist (which is included in the Application).
  • Once an Application is complete, based on all necessary review, the developer or owner may enter into a regulatory agreement with HPD. The fully executed, regulatory agreement must be recorded against the property containing the affordable units, for as long as the density bonus is in use, as a restriction running with the land.
  • Upon full execution of the regulatory agreement, HPD will generate a Permit Notice, commonly referred to as the "DOB letter", for delivery to the NYC Department of Buildings (DOB). The Permit Notice states the amount of affordable floor area that a project will generate and allows DOB to issue a permit, to the bearer, to build the additional density created pursuant to the IHP.
  • Upon completion of the affordable housing, HPD will issue certificate(s) that state the amount affordable floor area generated. Thereafter DOB may issue a certificate of occupancy for a project using density bonus generated by this affordable floor area.
  • A single affordable development may generate a density bonus for multiple Compensated Developments. See Section 23-911 of the Zoning Resolution for a definition of the term "Compensated Development."

VIH Fee Payment

  • A one hundred dollar deposit ($100) is required upon submission of an Application, to be applied towards the following filing fee;
  • A one thousand, one hundred dollar ($1,100) filing fee per affordable unit.

The total filing fee must be paid upon execution of the regulatory agreement.

Additional Materials