Bakersfield apartment to receive over $2 million to preserve affordable units

July 20, 2023 /

To preserve affordable housing for low-income Californians, Governor Gavin Newsom announced almost $160 million in funding that would be used to keep more affordable for up to 55 years. In Kern County, Golden Empire Affordable Housing, Inc. received $2,996,989 to preserve 16 units at Park Real Apartments in Bakersfield.

“We are pleased to receive a $2,996,989 Portfolio Reinvestment Program award from the State for the Park Real Apartments.  The funding will be used by Golden Empire Affordable Housing, Inc. to preserve the Park Real Apartments.  This will include a major modernization of the property to extend its useful life and improve the quality of the units for tenants,” stated Golden Empire Affordable Housing Executive Director Stephen Pelz. “We expect the work to begin in late summer/early fall.”

This funding is part of the state’s Portfolio Reinvestment Program (PRP), managed by the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). The program preserves low-income housing by extending affordability agreements and loan maturity dates, providing new low-interest long-term loans for the rehabilitation of housing, and providing forgivable loans to support short-term operating subsidies.

“As California faces a critical housing shortage, it is vital that we use every tool in our toolbox to build more housing faster and preserve affordability for individuals and families struggling with the high cost of rent,” stated Governor Newsom. Every Californian deserves a place to call home, and we are aggressively working to secure more affordable housing throughout the state.”

According to a press release sent out by the Office of Governor Newsom, preserving affordable homes is part of the multi-pronged strategy that was laid out in the California Statewide Housing Plan, which calls for 2.5 million new homes by 2030. At least one million of those homes would need to be affordable to Californians at lower income levels. 

“Keeping safe, quality, affordable homes from reverting to market rate is a key component of any strategy to address the crisis of homelessness our state is facing,” said HCD Director Gustavo Velasquez. “These strategic reinvestments – that ensure HCD-funded properties remain livable and affordable for the foreseeable future – will offer tens of thousands of Californians the housing stability and supportive services they need to be successful in a life lived off the street.”

Since 2022, $315.3 million has been awarded to preserve 1,64 affordable homes, assuring housing for nearly 27,000 people over the life of the developments’ affordability agreements.

These investments guarantee that rents in these thousands of homes remain affordable to low-income Californians for up to 55 more years, rather than permanently transforming into market-rate units.

Victoria Rodgers

Victoria Rodgers is an editor and reporter for Kern Sol News. Born in Bakersfield, CA, she received her Bachelor of Arts in English from Rockford University in Illinois. She can be reached at