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Social Capitalists: Housing Partnership Network

43 entrepreneurs who are changing the world
Social Capitalist 2008 Winner

Housing Partnership Network

Boston, MA 02109
Founded: 1990
President Thomas Bledsoe

Social Mission. Private Enterprise.

The Housing Partnership Network is a peer network and business alliance of 87 of the top-performing nonprofit housing organizations in the United States. Our members are entrepreneurial, innovative and grounded in their local markets through partnerships with the private and public sectors and civic leaders. They combine charitable mission with business savvy for maximum social impact.

Network members have produced, financed or preserved more than 600,000 affordable homes in urban, rural and suburban communities throughout the country, and provide a wide array of services to their residents. They have also counseled more than 400,000 families on homeownership and financial literacy. Through our members, more than two million low-income people receive quality housing and improved economic and educational opportunities.

In partnership with its members and social investors, the Network develops and operates enterprises that: 1) strengthen the business lines of housing partnerships; 2) promote the financial sustainability and mission of the Network and its members; and 3) advance the nonprofit field through innovative demonstrations of the social enterprise model.

The Network's Social Enterprises:

  • Housing Partnership Counseling. The Network is a funding intermediary for the federal housing counseling program. Since 1995, we have provided more than $16 million in grants to 40 members, who have counseled 400,000 lower-income families, helping 80,000 buy or retain homes.
  • The Housing Partnership Fund is a $30-million lending institution that provides revolving capital for development and preservation of affordable housing. Since 2001, the fund has financed more than 11,000 affordable homes built by 25 Network members.
  • Housing Partnership Ventures is the Network's investment vehicle, providing equity for the start-up and expansion of our collaborative social enterprises, including Housing Partnership Insurance, Housing Partnership Securities, and the Gulf Coast Housing Partnership. It has invested nearly $10 million to date.
  • Housing Partnership Insurance is an insurance company mutually owned by 19 regional nonprofits and the Network. It provides property and liability coverage for 37,000 affordable rental homes developed and operated by Network members. Through this effort, members have saved more than $1 million annually in premiums that have been reinvested in affordable housing and resident services.
  • Housing Partnership Securities is the nation's first nonprofit-owned bond conduit. It originates, pools and securitizes multifamily mortgages financed through tax-exempt bonds. Launched in mid-2006, the company's goal is to finance $100 million in mortgages annually to create or preserve 2,000 affordable homes.
  • Gulf Coast Housing Partnership is a New Orleans-based nonprofit development company that seeks to build 10,000 affordable homes in Louisiana and Mississippi communities affected by hurricanes. The company was launched in 2006 in close collaboration with local civic leadership, Network members from the Gulf region and around the country, national financial institutions and foundations.

The Network is developing a series of new initiatives. These include enhanced peer exchange among members, new resources for resident services, and new secondary financing market vehicles for charter school and homeownership lending. We project that our affiliated companies will generate sufficient net revenues to make us self-sustaining by 2008 and to create income that can support our policy advocacy and peer exchange work. They will also serve as replicable models for a more entrepreneurial and scalable nonprofit housing sector.