Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Feasibility of Zero Energy Multi-Family Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) Developments

Version 1 : Received: 24 July 2020 / Approved: 25 July 2020 / Online: 25 July 2020 (18:03:50 CEST)

How to cite: Jeddi Yeganeh, A.; Agee, P.R.; Gao, X.; McCoy, A.P. Feasibility of Zero Energy Multi-Family Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) Developments. Preprints 2020, 2020070619 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202007.0619.v1). Jeddi Yeganeh, A.; Agee, P.R.; Gao, X.; McCoy, A.P. Feasibility of Zero Energy Multi-Family Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) Developments. Preprints 2020, 2020070619 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202007.0619.v1).

Abstract

The residential sector in the United States is in need of comprehensive policy-making reforms that concurrently address housing affordability and environmental sustainability. This study investigates the feasibility of state-wide zero-energy affordable housing by analyzing historical data on climate, energy use, and solar system costs in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The hypothesis examined is that the net present cost of implementation of rooftop residential solar systems to achieve zero-energy Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) buildings is lower than the discounted present cost of energy of otherwise identical conventional buildings that run without renewable energy generation systems. The authors propose a generalizable framework for analyzing the feasibility of achieving region- or state-wide zero-energy LIHTC developments. To validate the framework, the authors employ a longitudinal sample of monthly energy use data from 2013-2016 obtained from 310 residential units of 15 LIHTC developments across the state. Based on statistical regression analysis, energy simulation, and simulation-based risk analysis, the authors find that the net present value of zero-energy LIHTC investments can be positive with a low risk. The investment value varies often depending on the zero-energy building definition, weather characteristics, retail price of electricity, and incentive rate. This study can help housing policymakers and industry professionals analyze and benchmark the feasibility of innovative zero-energy housing policies and projects.

Subject Areas

Affordable housing; Cost-benefit analysis; Monte Carlo simulation; Solar energy

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