Three companies to invest more than $70 million for affordable housing in Charlotte area

Three companies to invest more than $70 million for affordable housing in Charlotte area
Bank of America, Ally and Barings will invest more than $70 million to help with affordable housing in Charlotte (Dedrick Russell)

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Ally Financial, Bank of America and Barings announced Tuesday that they would invest a combined $70.75 million to help with affordable housing in the Charlotte area.

With explosive growth in Charlotte, leaders say it is time to fix this problem.

“As the Charlotte economy has grown, low- to moderate-income families have to pay a disproportionate percentage of their take-home pay for decent housing in safe and stable neighborhoods,” said Ally CEO Jeff Brown.

“I hope today’s announcement encourages more companies to come forward to support our city,” Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles said. “It’s going to take all of us to solve these big issues facing so many of our citizens.”

The investment marks the largest private-sector commitment to affordable housing in Charlotte’s history, the investors say.

Now, investors are encouraging others to make an investment.

“While this investment is significant, there is more work to be done to make affordable housing achievable and sustainable in Charlotte,” said Barings Chairman and CEO Tom Finke. “We hope this partnership inspires other organizations to contribute to increasing economic mobility in our community.”

The companies say the partnership between them increases the impact of each company’s individual investments, which includes:

  • $50 million in below-market loans to finance affordable housing developments, which is equivalent to a $1 million grant per year for next 15 years.
  • $11 million invested in the newly proposed Housing Opportunity Investment Fund, which will assess affordable housing projects and find financing to execute viable projects.
  • $2.5 million allocated to economic mobility programming and grants over the next five years. 
  • $7.25 million worth of land donated to make affordable housing possible, particularly in Uptown Charlotte. 

Tuesday, the day the major announcement was made, also marks Martin Luther King Jr.’s 90th birthday.

Hugh McColl says churches are stepping up and helping with Charlotte’s affordable housing problem.

“In Charlotte, the general public, the business community and elected officials work together to take action and meet these needs,” said Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan. “This is a great model for other cities addressing similar issues.”

The below-market loans will be priced as much as 2 percent below market rate, saving affordable housing developers $1 million every year over the next 15 years, the investors say. This is expected to make more inventory available and help families access more options

Charlotte’s Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) will manage the newly-proposed Housing Opportunity Investment Fund.

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