HUD on track to implement NSPIRE inspection model

Regulation | August 17, 2020 | by Juliana Bilowich

On a LeadingAge call, HUD staff discussed updates and implementation timelines for NSPIRE, the agency's current physical inspection demonstration program. 

On August 17th, LeadingAge hosted a special edition of the Housing Advisory Group call, featuring HUD NSPIRE program manager Dan Williams. During the call, HUD staff shared a updates from a powerpoint presentation and addressed questions from LeadingAge members. A recording of the call is available here

The agency recently released a new set of standards for its current physical inspection pilot program; the new inspection model will eventually replace the current UPCS standards. For more information on the demonstration, visit https://www.hud.gov/program_offices/public_indian_housing/reac/nspire

Highlights from the LeadingAge Housing Advisory Group featuring HUD NSPIRE Staff:

  • The “National Standards for the Physical Inspection of Real Estate” (NSPIRE) is a voluntary demonstration program that tests a new model for HUD’s physical inspections; the new model will eventually replace the UPCS for the portfolio
  • COVID-19 slowed down the demonstration process, but they are still on track to end the demonstration program on their two-year plan to test new standards and models for inspecting HUD-assisted properties
  • In late 2021, HUD plans to issue a regulation for public comment, as well as notices announcing the new standards, in order to implement the new inspection model for the rest of the Multifamily Housing portfolio
  • HUD is still accepting properties into the demonstration program; they have not yet reached their 4500 property limit
  • During the demonstration, properties are inspected under the new NSPIRE standards and model, and scores are advisory during the course of the pilot
  • NSPIRE inspections will generally follow the same heatmap of COVID-19 cases that REAC is using for UPCS inspections; NSPIRE will also use the same general timeframe for restarting inspections, but will work with the property to find a mutually agreed upon time to do so (the 14-day notice period does not apply) and has the option of adapting processes as needed for COVID-19 safety
  • NSPIRE is flexible on the commitment to conduct in-unit self inspections during the health crisis; they are also looking at flexibilities or adaptations moving forward
  • NSPIRE is actively seeking feedback from housing providers about their new standards, and about the protocol and model for the new physical inspections
  • To submit feedback on the new standards, click the corresponding link to the relevant standard here
  • If you’ve applied for the pilot, or have been approved but are unsure of your status, you can check your property’s status here
  • For questions about next steps, email NSPIRE@HUD.GOV

LeadingAge will continue to engage with HUD as the demonstration progresses. To join the LeadingAge Housing Advisory Group, email jbilowich@leadingage.org.