Innovative Path To Homeownership Creates New Opportunities to Build Wealth

Foundation: Bush Foundation


A community center in Minneapolis that serves the Phillips area, Hope Community provides a place of refuge for those in need. Following the success of the nonprofit's homeownership pilot program, additional community partners have been motivated to invest in multifamily housing around the area. Hope has been given a $100,000 unrestricted grant from the Bush Foundation in recognition of their position as an innovator. This project offers owner-occupied duplexes for communities who have traditionally been disenfranchised due to a lack of financial resources, stagnating salaries, and a scarcity of affordable housing options. Phillips has long been considered a leader in progressive politics as well as a focal point of social unrest.

It was founded in 1856 by European immigrants and African-American families fleeing the southern states. By the early 1990s, the neighborhood was characterized by decaying and boarded-up houses, which gave the area an aura of desolation. Hope Community started purchasing homes at rock-bottom rates with the intention of rehabilitating them and renting them out to low-income individuals. The scope of Hope Community's affordable housing program has expanded beyond the purchase and rehabilitation of local properties. They are now collaborating with land banks to acquire land as part of a proactive campaign to combat rising property prices.

Some Hope residents are making the transition from renter to homeowner by participating in a trial homeownership program offered by the city. When it comes to homeownership, Smith Jones argues, "social capital is something that comes to mind." Earlier this year, the JPMorgan Chase AdvancingCities Challenge announced a $4 million award to the Minneapolis-based organization Hope Community to expand its homeownership program across the metro region. Participants in the pilot program are required to complete a six-week renter-to-owner training program. Everything from developing a business strategy to comprehending the intricate dynamics of finance, equity, and shifting house prices is covered in the program.

After a successful pilot program, Family Housing Fund is extending its efforts to assist first-time homeowners in developing community wealth by becoming owner-occupant landlords of small multifamily units. The first two duplex acquisitions in Minneapolis were completed successfully in October 2021, with both properties being sold to women of color. Contrary to the fact that the vast majority (80%) of multifamily buildings were initially constructed for owner-occupied renters, just 40% of these structures have live-in landlords. A two- to four-unit property costs the same as a single-family house in terms of mortgage payments, but if you purchase one, you can anticipate your worth to rise by at least $300,000 in 15 years. In the next two years, the Family Housing Fund expects to support around 200 homes within the seven-county metro region. According to Guglielmo, "Hope Community's work is a shining example of community-driven innovation." Read the Entire Article

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