Funding for your Historic Building
Why is historic preservation an important focus for downtown Elkin?
Our board believes in preserving and protecting the integrity of historic structures for years to come. If your building is listed on our register and is a contributing building, you could be eligible for historic tax credits when renovation or restoring your property. To learn more, contact the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) if you are interested in applying. Our regional contact for Elkin (in Raleigh) is Brett Sturm at 919-814-6589.
If you are considering a renovation of your historic property, please contact us locally at Elkin Town Hall for assistance at 336-258-8908. There are also numerous links on this page with further restoration and tax credit information on the state and local level. Below are other opportunities for funding that your historic building may qualify for besides historic tax credits.
If you are considering a historic facade restoration, click here for guidelines of appropriate measures for historic facade repairs in our B-1 district.
Elkin was recently notified that they (along with two other NC Main Street Communities in North Carolina) have been awarded a facade grant program through the Main Street America Program, funded by the National Park Service for contributing historic buildings listed on their National Register. Your building must be contributing, or eligible to be added as a contributing building prior to the completion of your project in order to obtain grant funds. Grant preference is for facades undergoing rehabilitation work, not general maintenance. Rehabilitation of historic facades must comply with historic preservation standards (see below) in order to qualify as well. This is a 70/30 match grant but funding is based on available funds and # of applications.
LINK TO FLYER WITH MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE NPS GRANT
If you have a building in poor condition with a project ready to begin and are interested in applying for this grant (which can provide anywhere from $5,000.00 to $25,000.00 in grant money for your facade), please contact Laura Gaylord, Main Street & Community Manager at email@example.com. Applications will be accepted, starting in April 2020. Funds awarded are based on the number of applications, project importance/impact, and availability of remaining funds.
If you are ready to APPLY NOW with a shovel-ready project (which has not yet begun) and you have contractor quotes ready to submit, contact Laura Gaylord, Main Street Manager for an appointment to obtain review for projects approval prior to sending in your application. No work can begin until your application and site visits have occurred and you have been approved for the funding by the National Park Service.
After your project has been reviewed and approved by the Main Street Advisory Board, then you should
CLICK HERE TO APPLY. FUNDING IS LIMITED AND ON A FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED BASIS.
If you are interested in applying but don't have all your necessary info, you can apply for consideration (and send in your required information later) by going to this link for a pre-approval:
2. Main Street America Program funds (State funding)
NC Main Street Center offers partial funding towards restorative improvements of historic buildings if the building and project qualify for preservation or restoration standards.
Main Street Solutions Fund
Buildings that are currently not in use, are in need of structural or infrastructure upgrades, are a contributing building on the historic register within the Municipal Service District, and whose future use will provide at least 4 full-time jobs, qualify for this fund. The fund amount is based on the number of full-time jobs created by the new business that will open within the renovated building once the project is complete. Each new full-time job that is created awards the investor with $25,000, with a cap of $100,000.* To learn more, visit https://www.nccommerce.com/grants-incentives/downtown-development-funds
At this time, the State of North Carolina does not offer this fund in its budget.
3. Main Street Advisory Board grants (Local funding)
Building ownership in the downtown, within the Municipal Tax District (MSD), has some wonderful benefits. Although the MSD is a small tax collected from the building owners in the district each year, the funds are reinvested by the Main Street Advisory Board towards improvements that benefit the downtown as a whole.
This year, the board will offer grants for Economic Vitality and for Public Art.
If interested in updating the exterior facade of your building or making some qualifying interior improvements on empty buildings, you may apply for an economic vitality grant through the Main Street Advisory Board. Limited funding for matching grants is available for preservation and beautification of hardship buildings, to include painting, repairing rotted window sills or doors/doorways, general repair work, the addition of awnings, safety/code updates, etc. The board is also interested in promoting upper-level development projects in buildings with empty, underutilized 2nd floors, to help promote the longevity of the historic buildings. Some costs involved with adding apartments to upper levels can be included in this grant funding, such as fire suppression materials, sprinkler systems, and exterior fire escapes.
If you need a design or color recommendation for your building's facade, the Main Street Program offers a free design service as well. They also provide (on a quarterly basis) the opportunity for upper-level apartment design plans, also at no charge. Contact Laura Gaylord to learn more.
For the 20/21 fiscal year, the Board is offering grants for downtown building upgrades. $2000.00 has been dedicated to the fund on a first-come, first-served basis. The Board will match 1:3 up to $1000.00 (or less, based on awarded funds) towards building improvements. Other qualifiers are as follows:
1. Rehabilitation of historic buildings must comply with historic preservation standards to qualify (see below).
2. Funds will not be reimbursed for "do-it-yourself projects" and must be completed by an insured contractor.
3. Applications for consideration must be submitted (preferably) by February 2021. Projects must be completed to the MSAB's satisfaction and per application approval by the MSAB.
4. Reimbursement paperwork must be submitted by June 1, 2021. Extensions may be considered by the board if addressed prior to May 1, 2021.
Please note: If you are considering changing the footprint of your historic facade, we advise you not to do so. Changing your footprint or destroying the historic structure of your contributing building (to anything that is not approved by SHPO) can change your historic building's status from contributing to non-contributing status and will permanently remove any chance of obtaining tax credits for you or future buyers. Please consult with the Main Street Manager prior to any changes or renovations of your building.
The Main Street Advisory Board is encouraging creativity in the arts and entertainment district of downtown Elkin, with the installation of murals and one public art display:
- For FY 20/21, the board will focus on back alley murals - $100 per alley door will be paid to the artist, unless otherwise approved. Limit of 8 murals for this fiscal year. Business owners are encouraged to fund supply costs or must match any amount above $100.00 for back alley door mural art, unless the MSAB agrees otherwise.
Download the application for the historic economic vitality/ facade grants here:
Download the application for public art/ mural grants here:
Application for public art / mural grant
Funds in each grant category are limited and available amounts change annually. Funds are available from the fiscal year starting in July and ending the following year in June.
RESOURCES for Historic Elkin BuildingsTo learn more about your historic property in Elkin:
Check on these listings to see if the property is a CONTRIBUTING building. If so, then you can apply for historic tax credits if you are restoring your building, using requirements set forth by the National Park Service:
- Downtown Elkin Historic District listings on the National Register (Commercial): https://files.nc.gov/ncdcr/nr/SR0665.pdf
- Gwyn Ave-Bridge St District listing on the National Register (Residential): https://files.nc.gov/ncdcr/nr/SR0667.pdf
Tax Credit Information (both State & Federal apply):
- State Historic Tax Credit Info, go to https://www.ncdcr.gov/about/history/division-historical-resources/nc-state-historic-preservation-office. Here is a video showing how to use their website and how to understand your historic property and its story.
- Federal Historic Tax Credit Info, FORMS TO APPLY https://www.nps.gov/tps/tax-incentives/application.htm
- SHPO training video that explains the tax credits and how they are used on a project:
Surry County Historic Resources:
- Historic Register listing for Surry Properties - For any other questions on Downtown Elkin's historic register listing individual properties in downtown and in the Gwyn Avenue - Bridge Street historic district, please contact Laura Gaylord, Main Street & Community Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Digital Library for Surry County (referencing Elkin)
Rehabilitation of Historic BuildingsHistoric buildings follow a different set of building codes in North Carolina, created in 2016, call the NC Existing Building Codes. To see if your structure qualifies, click here.
- The Standards of Historic Preservation (NPS website)
The Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation (& Sustainability)
Historic Tax Credit Information for Historic Buildings
Information on Historic Preservation & Rehabilitation of your Historic Building:
Introduction to the Standards
New to Historic Tax Credits? Read this link first!
Current Historic Tax Credit information by Preservation NC
Historic Preservation Advice for:
Window Replacement/Restoration Preservation NC
Historic Window Energy Efficiency
The Town of Elkin is working together with the NC Rural Center to offer micro loans to small businesses located in Elkin. The program is called Energizing Elkin Entrepreneurs (also known as "E3"). The first round specifically focuses on downtown businesses, however if you are a business in Elkin outside of the downtown area, please let us know if you are interested.
Leslie Schlender (Economic Development Director) at 336-258-8907
Laura Gaylord (Main Street and Community Manager) at 336-258-8908