INDIANAPOLIS — A $6 million plan to improve affordable housing in Indianapolis is getting started using American Rescue Plan funds.

The city plans to help several phases of affordable housing, from helping to keep people in their houses, creating more affordable housing and supporting those facing homelessness.

”Coming out of the pandemic, we’re in a housing crisis, we’re experiencing it throughout the county,” said Rusty Carr, the deputy director of Metropolitan Development.

Carr said the $6 million is the first step in a more than $50 million plan to help affordable housing.

”We want to make sure we’re using our dollars to leverage as many as we can to make a sustainable and really big change in the system of affordable housing,” Carr said.

As part of the plan, $3 million will go to develop four new affordable housing developments across the city.

The locations for the sites are at 1621 W. 86th St., 3133 N. Central Ave., 2929 Washington St. and 1001 Palmer St.

”These would be helping create about 450 units of affordable housing,” Carr said.

Twenty-one units would be dedicated to supporting substance abuse, and 160 would be reserved for senior assisted living.

”These projects would be available to those making less than 60% of the area median income, and they would really be affordable for about 30 to 40 years,” Carr said.

About $720,000 will also go to helping people stay in their homes through the Indy Affordable Modification Program, or Indy AMP.

”This funding would help to refinance focus that are in high cost mortgages or are housing cost burdened,” said Carr.

Alvin Sangsuwangul works for KHEPRW, which partners with Indy AMP. He said on average people who use the program save $200 a month on their mortgages.

Sangsuwangul said Indy AMP will use the new money to work more closely with people in need.

”So if their credit is not in a place where they can qualify yet, how we can get their credit into a better place, whether its credit repair or credit counseling,” he said.

Another large chunk of the funds, $2 million, will go to the Housing to Recovery Fund.

”That’s to really help with wrap around support for those experiencing homelessness,” Carr said.

Carr said that $2 million can help up to 260 households for four years.

DMD is also supporting the Fair Housing Center of Central Indiana with $300,000 to help look into tenant screening requirements, equity theft, mortgage lending, and other COVID impacted housing barriers to determine violations of fair housing laws.

Additional American Rescue Plan funding will also go to the Tenant Advocacy Project, a service giving legal help to Hoosiers facing eviction in small claims court.