Giving Compass' Take:

• Fast Company reports on the emergence of community land trusts (a nonprofit housing system that makes buying property more affordable), and the new accelerator program to help scale them.

• With affordable housing and homelessness reaching crisis-level proportions in many pockets of the country, it's worth looking at how a financial partnership like this one can help expand people's options.

• Just remember, though: When we talk about affordable housing, we must also talk about equity.

There are ways around the housing market’s high bar to entry, and one of them is a community land trust — a nonprofit housing system that buys up land and places it into community development for the purpose of ensuring long-term affordability. The CLT owns the land, and either sells or rents out properties on the land to low-income families at rates tied to median incomes, not market prices. If someone owns a home that’s part of a CLT and decides to sell it, they also have to peg the resale price to the affordability metrics determined by the CLT, not for their own personal profit ...

There are still only just over 250 established in the U.S. and most are quite small–SFCLT, for instance, contains just 63 homes.

Now, though, there’s potential for those numbers to rise. Citi Community Development, the bank’s financial inclusion arm, and Grounded Solutions Network, the umbrella nonprofit for U.S. CLTs, are launching an accelerator program specifically to scale up existing CLTs, and provide start-up support to ones not yet established. With a $1 million investment from Citi Community Development, Grounded Solutions Network will be able to expand the technical assistance it offers to CLTs in every stage of development, and build out new tools to encourage city governments and community groups to establish CLTs.

Read the full article about the accelerator program for affordable housing by Eillie Anzilotti at