Vancity Community Investment Bank to finance up to $100 million to build new affordable housing

Nov 20 2020, 12:28 pm

A subsidiary of Vancity Credit Union will provide up to $100 million to help finance new affordable housing projects by September 2021.

This investment, a partnership with federal crown corporation Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), is being called a ground-breaking agreement for realizing affordable housing.

“This is the first time CMHC has joined forces with a financial institution committing an investment of such magnitude solely for affordable housing,” said Evan Siddall, the president and CEO of CMHC, in a statement.

“It is our intention to enter into more such agreements of this nature. Moving forward, we hope to see many more banks and other financiers step up.”

Financing for affordable housing under the partnership with CMHC is in the form of low-interest loans, and will be provided by Vancity Community Investment Bank (VCIB).

VCIB is the community impact arm of the credit union, which already has programs that invests in affordable housing, green buildings, arts and community spaces, non-profit properties, co-operative housing, and heritage buildings.

The investments come in the frameworks of financing for construction, term, bridge, CMHC insured, and acquisition.

“Canada’s housing crisis can be fixed, but to do so the public and private sector must come together to find innovative, long-lasting solutions,” said Jay-Ann Gilfoy, CEO of VCIB.

“VCIB is delighted to enter into this first-of-a-kind agreement with CMHC, which will prioritize affordable housing solutions across Canada to help address this crisis head-on and meet the needs of all Canadians.”

CMHC states VCIB’s partnership is in alignment with the federal government’s objective under the National Housing Strategy to bring together public, private, and non-profit sectors to deliver affordable housing.

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