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Grand Rapids non-profit finalizes deal to acquire 177 properties for affordable housing

Headquarters of the Inner City Christian Federation in Grand Rapids.
Dustin Dwyer
Michigan Radio
Headquarters of the Inner City Christian Federation in Grand Rapids.

A non-profit in Grand Rapids has purchased more than 177 properties for affordable housing.

The Inner City Christian Federation finalized the deal earlier this week.

There are 213 housing units across the properties. ICCF finalized the deal this week.

Ryan VerWys, CEO of the ICCF, says there is a big need for affordable housing in Grand Rapids.

“We've seen home prices in Grand Rapids, since 2011, go up 60%, and we know that incomes have not kept pace,” VerWys said.

VerWys says most of the properties already have tenants living in them. He says his company has no intention of raising their current rent prices.

“We wanted to make sure that as ownership was transferred people wouldn't run the risk of seeing their rents go up by $200 or $300 at a time,” he said.

VerWys says the company plans to speak to current tenants about becoming homeowners over the next few months.

“We think it’s great to have communities with a mixture of homeowners and renters, it keeps neighborhoods diverse in many ways,” he said.

VerWys is still meeting with the current tenants to see what their living needs are and in what ways they aren’t being met. 

Bryce Huffman was Michigan Radio’s West Michigan Reporter and host of Same Same Different. He is currently a reporter for Bridge Detroit.
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