Expanding Affordable Housing and Supporting Developers of Color
Affordable housing development firms led by people of color – both nonprofit and for-profit – are highly underrepresented in the housing industry, yet are a critical resource for strengthening the housing development ecosystem as a whole and expanding the supply of homes that are affordable.
To increase the supply of homes that are affordable and to support the sustained growth and financial independence of experienced development firms that are led by people of color, Wells Fargo launched Growing Diverse Housing Developers (GDHD). Flexible and patient capital, a strengthened balance sheet, and increased access to industry connections and resources will help experienced development firms led by people of color to grow their capacity and expand their affordable housing production into the future.
Capital Impact Partners, Low Income Investment Fund, and Reinvestment Fund – three national Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) – have partnered to implement this $30 million initiative on behalf of Wells Fargo.
The Growing Diverse Housing Developers builds on Capital Impact’s successful Equitable Development Initiative training program for emerging real estate developers of color across the country.
Capital Impact Partners, LIIF, and Reinvestment Fund will work to deliver essential capital and capacity building to development firms led by people of color based in GDHD’s core geographies: California; Texas; Georgia; and the New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington Metro regions.
With the goal of supporting development firms led by people of color to produce a minimum of 1,500 affordable housing units across the cohort over the next six years, we have selected 27 development firms led by people of color with affordable housing development pipelines in these focus geographies to join a national learning cohort, which will take place over four years.
In committing to the program, participants will receive access to:
- The Wells Fargo National Learning Cohort, featuring a monthly curriculum tailored to participants’ desired learning outcomes; peer learning sessions; advisory services; dedicated mentors; and national and regional events to provide essential knowledge and networks to support business growth.
- Access to enterprise-level grants to fund investments in infrastructure, staff, and other resources needed to build the capacity of participants’ organizations.
- Access to flexible loan products to fund their affordable housing pipeline in the focus geographies.
This initiative is made possible through Wells Fargo’s $40 million grant initiative that aims to increase racial equity in access to capital and training for housing entrepreneurs of color to grow their businesses. Capital Impact, LIIF, and RF are implementing the program using $30 million of that investment.
Our Broader Support for Developers of Color
Growing Diverse Housing Developers expands on each of the coalition partner’s programming supporting developers of color to participate in real estate development in their regions. Here are examples of initiatives we are each working on that invest in the futures of developers.
- Low Income Investment Fund, in partnership with National Affordable Housing Trust, launched the Black Developer Capital Initiative in 2021.
- Reinvestment Fund has financed investment vehicles in Philadelphia and Baltimore to support undercapitalized housing developers, particularly those historically underrepresented in development.
- Capital Impact Partners has trained, or is training, nearly 200 developers of color through its Equitable Development Initiative (EDI) programs in the Detroit, Washington, San Francisco and Dallas areas; and welcomed its first cohort of the Housing Equity Accelerator Fellowship in the D.C. region in May 2022.
Meet Our Growing Diverse Housing Developers Participants
Our Growing Diverse Housing Developers participants represent a diverse group of individuals with a range of backgrounds and experience. We invite you to learn more about them by downloading the fact sheet below.
Stories of Impact
CEO Ellis Carr On Breaking Barriers to Success
In this video, Ellis Carr talks about Capital Impact’s efforts to utilize mission-driven financing, social innovation programs, capacity building, and impact investing, to advance issues of social and economic justice.
Learning New Skills to Shape Their Future
The EDI program provides key skills to promising individuals representing a broad spectrum of community development expertise. Follow along as we take a deep dive with three participants to learn more about their backgrounds and their future plans.
Connecting DMV Developers to Capital
In an effort to support a more diverse pool of local real estate developers, Capital Impact launched its Diversity in Development – DMV Loan Fund. This Fund also includes a grant program to provide additional equity support.