Commercial Real Estate
Affordable housing and our racial equity commitment
JPMorgan Chase’s Community Development Banking has increased its Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) investments and expanded its New Markets Tax Credit and Historic Tax Credit efforts.
More than one year down, JPMorgan Chase has already deployed or committed more than $13 billion of its $30 billion racial equity commitment.
The four goals established include:
- Promoting and expanding affordable housing and homeownership for underserved communities.
- Growing Black and Latino-owned businesses.
- Improving financial health and access to banking in Black and Latino communities.
- Accelerating investment in the firm’s employees and building a more diverse and inclusive workforce.
One tine of the commitment’s fork is focused on expanding affordable housing, which is where Alice Carr, JPMorgan Chase’s head of Community Development Banking, comes in. The company has already increased its Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) investments by $400 million, but also has expanded its efforts with New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) and Historic Tax Credit (HTC) as well.
“This is a starting point for us as a firm,” Carr said. “We believe there’s still a lot of work to do on the initial commitment.”
Narrowing the scope of these efforts to affordable housing, JPMorgan Chase seeks to use $14 billion in new loans, equity investments and other efforts to finance the creation and preservation of 100,000 affordable rental apartments. To date, the financier has funded more than 60,000 affordable housing and rental units across the nation.
It’s also approved $1 billion in lending for new construction and rehabilitation of affordable housing, created a team to offer innovative financing options by working with a broader range of capital sources and closed on $46 million of a $500 million commitment to affordable housing preservation funds.
In tandem with boosting affordable rental housing, JPMorgan Chase has also sought to invest in community institutions and services, including establishing a new Racial Equity Initiative that uses NMTC investments.
Kevin Goldsmith, JPMorgan Chase’s director of tax credit and intermediaries lending in Community Development Banking, said he’s proud of the intentionality his team has shown focusing its efforts toward businesses and nonprofits that are primarily Black-led, Black-owned or Black-serving when developing a Special Purpose Credit Program within its NMTC investment goals.
As of Sept. 30, 2021, the initiative funded $116 million in efforts to further growth and inclusion.
Carr and Goldsmith pointed to a bevy of examples where JPMorgan Chase’s efforts toward racial equity can be seen in action.
- JPMorgan Chase invested in HTCs to help turn McDonogh No. 19 Elementary School—where, in 1960, U.S. Marshals escorted the first Black students to integrate and all white school in New Orleans—into 25 affordable housing units for seniors, a museum recognizing the site’s history and space for nonprofits such as The People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond, a collective of anti-racist organizers.
- In Washington, D.C., JPMorgan Chase's NMTC investment financed the renovation and expansion of the Community of Hope family health and birth center in an underserved, predominantly Black area.
- Covenant House of Illinois, which provides shelter for homeless youth, worked with JPMorgan Chase to deliver tax credit equity to build a new headquarters facility on Chicago’s West Side.
“We are only getting started,” Carr said. “We’re just one year in, and there’s a lot of work to do. There’s work we’re doing now that will feed into additional work that we haven’t even formulated yet.”
Adapted with permission from “JPMorgan Chase Reflects on First Year of Racial Equity Commitment,” Nick DeCicco, Novogradac Journal of Tax Credits, January 2022