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TOPIC: Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC

Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 10 years 1 month ago #6966

Are compliance departments that review and approve the files for move in on LIHTC important to have? Would it be better to have the onsite team approve all the files and eliminate the compliance department? What are the benefits to having a compliance department that reviews files and approves for the Property Management Companies and Owners?

Re:Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 10 years 1 month ago #6971

Our company does not have a compliance department officially, but we do have a corporate staff member (usually a bookkeeper or assistant) that stops by the property monthly do to surprise audits. I think it is wonderful, not only does it remind the onsite staff to not deviate from the rules, but it also gives a peace of mind that there is consistency at each and every location. I am a site manager and I appreciate our monthly audits for the soul purpose of the peace of mind it brings.
  • Boonee
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Re:Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 10 years 1 month ago #6994

We using compliance specialist to approve move-in's and recertifications. This really keeps all the files in our portfollio very consistant with how income and assets are verified. Plus it frees up the site manager to concentrate more on leasing, customer service, and resident retention.

Re:Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 10 years 1 month ago #6999

Jolene,

I strongly believe that having a separate set of eyes review each files aside from your onsite staff is important. Onsite staff gets sometimes to comfortable with the day-to-day operations and can easily overlook or make a simple mistake that can cause the ownership their credits. At my company I have a Affordable Housing Specialist and a Compliance Auditor. They review all move-ins, recert and programs reports before execution. Before I had my own staff, I used third-party companies such as Spectrum, FileCap and Preferred Compliance. I actually was the founder and partner of FileCap, which is now own by Apogee New Dawn. However, I'm not sure if they are still accepting outside clients, or simply servicing their own sites.

Hope this helps.

Thanks,
Pedro

Re:Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 10 years 1 month ago #7016

I believe it is absolutely necessary to have a compliance specialist or auditor that is thoroughly trained and experienced in reviewing files and recerts. Many times the on-site staff doesn't have the depth of training or the time to do the job properly. Remember compliance is critical to the owner retaining their tax credits on a property. The compliance specialist or auditor makes sure that every file is reviewed consistently and is in the proper order to comply with the requirements.
  • Linda Page
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Re:Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 10 years 1 month ago #7018

My company has a compliance dept and we all have a regular auditor who is familiar with our site and there for us. All move-in files must be pre-approved by compliance prior to the resident getting a welcome letter. They also visit each site once a month to review files as as well as provide quarterly training classes. I couldn't make it without my auditor! Although I have been doing this for many years I try to attend at least one class a year as a refresher. For instance today I attended an advance TC training. I manage senior apartments now so I rarely run into employment incomes, and I never have military pay, child support, students, and such, however I help out on other sites quite often and need that knowledge to be fresh.
I am not the most detailed person (more of a big picture type) so I often miss things. Knowing I have my auditor to back me up makes a huge difference. Our auditor reviews recerts as well leaves us with a "correction sheet" to complete by her next visit. She not only reivews the file for errors, but makes sure all files are uniform which the state auditors really like! When it's time for the state to review files, I always know that at least all of my new move-ins will be perfect! The state auditor is also familiar with our auditor so they have a good working relationship which makes for a smooth IRS audit.

Re:Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 10 years 1 month ago #7029

These questions came up when a group of my industry friends and I were talking about a compliance department and if they were important or not. I have work for two companies where they had a compliance department that reviewed and approved the files before you could even move in. I have also worked for a company that you approve on site and audit your own files. My friends were jealouse of this because to them they feel that compliance departments were out to make their lives difficult. Personally I miss having a compliance department, the training, and the knowledge that an state audit is a piece of cake because you know everything is okay since you did not approve the file. I also realized that by having a compliance department the stress of making sure the files were correct was lifted off the entire office team and allowed more time for porductive things like leasing, resident retention and out reach marketing. But hey that is my feelings on being pro for a compliance department. I asked this question to see what other companies had in regards to compliance departments. I think that there is a lack in LIHTC training for onsite everywhere and eventually it can hurt companies who ignore this. If anyone is looking for additional training on LIHTC check out The Training Factor Taking The Tax out of Tax Credit, seriously a good inexpensive course that is great for reviewing the rules or learning them.

Re:Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 10 years 1 month ago #7041

Let me echo the sentiment in saying that having a compliance officer or department is essential. I don't make many mistakes, and most of my files get approved at first review by my compliance officer; but when I do, it is usually a bonehead typo or something. When it is not, it is a situation I either have not encountered, or not encountered for a while. I am appreciative of the second set of eyes on my files. I have complete confidence in the files I have created when it comes to state/housing authority/bank audits. The files I inherited, on the other hand; not so much....

What would be helpful, and is something I am pursuing, is the site compliance specialist designation.

Re:Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 7 years 11 months ago #12590

how long does or should it take for a compliance report back when applying for a low income apartment. We have been waiting for 2 weeks, we were preapproved by apartment management company, but still waiting on compliance officer to respond. thanks for any info on this.
  • Rita
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Compliance Departments for Property Management Companies that manage LIHTC 6 years 4 months ago #15176

How long does a property managerment have to pro long a non- complaince complaint. I was wrongfull accussed going on 4 weeks ago and the manager keep saying they reschdule it or complaince can not make it. this is going to be the fourth meeting i will be trying to go to this week. How lon gdoes a property managerment have to keep doing this before it's wrong and what proof should they have they just got two verbal complaint that is not true do they need more proof such as pictures that i had a dog on my porch or property it was not mine dog.What should i do.
  • Damira Trabue
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