City aims to preserve affordable housing unit

Bellevue plans to purchase an affordable housing condo unit to save it from foreclosure on June 30.

The city of Bellevue intends to purchase an affordable housing condominium unit to save it from foreclosure and preserve its pricing regulations.

At its May 28 study session, the city council gave direction to staff to contact the owner of the unit to express the intent to purchase the unit if a tenant is not able to rent the space by June 30.

Janet Lewine, associate planner with the Community Development Department, explained the history behind the unit and why the city is taking this step. From 1991 to 1996, Bellevue had mandatory affordable housing regulations that said every project with more than 10 units required 10 percent of the units to be affordable to people making 80 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI).

The unit in question is part of the Lakemont Ridge development that was built in 1995 Lewine said. Due to the owner coming into financial troubles, the unit was at risk of foreclosure which would strip it of any of the legacy affordable housing regulations still in place.

If the city buys the condo unit, it would be able to resell the unit to maintain the 80 percent AMI requirement for the unit. The owner has until June 30 — the owner’s foreclosure date — to find a new tenant. If a resident is not found to rent the space, the city will have the right of first refusal to purchase the unit.

The condo is currently listed at $365,000, Lewine said, and part of the listed cost includes money for maintenance and improvements.

If the city does purchase the unti, the council has directed staff to wait to resell it until A Regional Coalition for Housing’s (ARCH) affordable housing review is complete. The data from the report could be used to inform what type of affordability regulations would be the best fit for the unit.

The city became aware of the foreclosure in early April and had to express their intent to act by June 1. Lewine spoke with the owner who would need to find an eligible person to rent the unit by mid-June to meet the June 30 deadline.

“We would like to get a new owner in,” Lewine said. “But the city is all set to fill out the paperwork and complete the purchase.”

In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in News

Bellevue Chamber CEO: Volunteers help with downtown cleanup

Update: They are not seeking additional volunteers at this time. Cleanup comes after a few stores in Bellevue faced property damage from looters.

Bellevue City Hall. Photo courtesy city of Bellevue
How is COVID-19 impacting Bellevue?

New King County data dashboard breaks down case rates, number of unemployment filings and more.

Kabal Gill, owner of East India Grill in Federal Way, wears gloves to hand over take-out orders at his restaurant on March 23. File photo
New guidelines for Phase 2 reopenings in King County

All workers will need to wear masks as restaurants, retail shops and other businesses reopen.

This undated file photo provided by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows CDC’s laboratory test kit for the new coronavirus. Courtesy photo
Inslee wants nursing home residents and staff tested by June 12

Governor says state will pay for test kits and personal protective equipment.

Bellevue College selects Gary Locke as interim president

Locke formerly served as governor of Washington State

Stock image
Campgrounds to reopen in 22 Washington counties

Campgrounds in counties actively in Phase 2 of the reopening plan will begin to welcome visitors June 1, state says.

King County Sheriff Mitzi Johanknecht. FILE PHOTO
King County sheriff releases message about Minneapolis Police officer

Mitzi Johanknecht calls video of officer kneeling on neck of George Floyd ‘heartbreaking and disturbing’

File photo of construction near North Bend on Aug. 16. Sound Publishing file photo
                                File photo of construction near North Bend on Aug. 16. Sound Publishing file photo
Rural King County mayors want state to let them enter Phase 2

Mayors cite heavy economic damage from prolonged shutdown.

New dashboard shows how far along King County is to meeting Phase II metrics

The county has met more than half its goals, but the ones it hasn’t met are critical in determining how many people are still being infected, and how quickly people are being tested.

Most Read