Founded in 2005, Build Wealth recently launched the 9,000 Equities initiative.
As the Homeownership Center pursues work, it goes without saying that our daily efforts leverage and amplify the efforts of our 30-plus Homeownership Advisors Network agency partners. But we also leverage and contribute to the efforts of many other organizations. For example, we collaborated with Minnesota Realtors® and Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity in developing and bringing forward our successful legislative proposal establishing the First Generation Homebuyers Down Payment Assistance Fund. And we’ve partnered with community experts in the creation of specialized topic guides such as our guides to ITIN Mortgages and Non-Interest-Bearing Financing.
Another community partner we collaborate with regularly is Build Wealth Minnesota. Founded in 2005, Build Wealth works primarily with Minnesota’s Black households to achieve financial security and create generational wealth. While homeownership is certainly a piece of the wealth-building puzzle, Build Wealth offers a more wholistic approach with its Family Stabilization Program that addresses the challenge of building social as well as financial wealth from the ground up. “We teach participants about systems, both good and bad,” says Build Wealth founder and executive director David McGee. “How do they work? How do you navigate them? Also, many of those we work with have been victims of predatory practices in the past. We teach them how to generate savings, avoid debt, build credit, buy a home and protect themselves from predatory lenders.”
In 2022, Build Wealth launched 9000 Equities, an initiative seeking to reduce Minnesota’s Black-White homeownership equity gap by 15 percent. “Over the years, the racial homeownership gap between Black and White Minnesotans has continued to rise despite our efforts and the efforts of many others,” McGee says. “People talk, they pick numbers out of the air, and nothing happens. We wanted to determine what was realistic. What we found based on the data was that if we could help 9,000 Black families to achieve homeownership over the next seven years, we could reduce this Black-White gap by 15 percent. That would be an impactful change. And it’s absolutely doable with all of us working toward the same goal.”
9000 Equities is a partnership between 16 organizations working in the homeownership space, including us here at the Center, Network agency Model Cities, and Twin Cities NARAB. The partners recorded more than 700 successful purchases in the first year of the initiative, and momentum is growing with more than 1,000 households currently in the pipeline.
For more information on Build Wealth Minnesota, go to BWealthE.org.