Using the Community Land Trust (CLT) model, the MWCLT creates homes that are sold to qualified buyers, while retaining ownership of the land beneath the houses. These homes receive permanent subsidy that stays in the home and allows the home to be sold below market value. As an affordable alternative to renting, the CLT model allows families to build wealth through their monthly mortgage payments. In exchange for buying the house at a lower price, a CLT homeowner agrees to pass on the savings and sell the home at a price that is affordable to someone in a similar financial situation. The new resale price is determined by the increase in the Richmond region’s Area Median Income (AMI). In addition to its activities as a community land trust, the MWCLT is also the land bank for the localities it serves, making it the first combined community land trust/land bank in the country. In this capacity, the CLT receives property from localities and works with stakeholders to convey it to uses that benefit the community, with affordable housing as its highest priority.
Regional Land Bank
As Richmond’s regional land bank, the MWCLT works closely with jurisdictional leadership from the City of Richmond, Chesterfield and Henrico to identify, acquire and disburse properties from their inventory of tax delinquent, abandoned, and surplus properties for affordable housing and other uses that benefit the community. In this role, the MWCLT serves as the intermediary between these localities and community organizations that need land to advance their missions.
Regional Community Land Trust
Using the Community Land Trust (CLT) model, the MWCLT creates single-family homes that are sold to qualified low- to moderate-income buyers, while retaining ownership of the land beneath the houses. When a homeowner sells, the CLT and the homeowner “share” the equity created by the increase in market value. The CLT’s share stays in the house and is not added to the sales price. This keeps the home affordable to future qualified homebuyers. The CLT model requires only one subsidy at the start and then makes that home affordable to all future purchasers without additional subsidy. In its role as a community land trust, MWCLT: (1) conducts extensive community outreach to build support for the CLT and recruit homebuyers; (2) acquires and develops land into permanent affordable housing; (3) provides home buyer education classes and credit counseling; and (4) works with mortgage lenders.