LHOME’s History

LHOME stands for

The Louisville Housing Opportunities and Micro-Enterprise Community Development Loan Fund, Inc.

 

September 2019 -

We are celebrating - LHOME has been actively lending for two years! To-date, LHOME has made 55 loans totaling $549,508 to small business owners and homeowners in Louisville, KY.  LHOME is committed to providing accessible, affordable loan products and financial coaching services to its clients, most of whom are African American and African Refugees, living and/or working in western and southern Louisville neighborhoods. While we are only required to focus 60 % of our lending efforts to these geographic areas, we can report that 47 of these 55 loans (and 93.5% of the funds) have been deployed in the 90 low-moderate income census tracts that make up our Investment Area. (linked)

Yet these two years of tremendous growth did not happen without previous years of groundwork by many people and many supporting organizations. 

LHOME MILESTONES

·         2011       Formed by JFCS and MHC, and established nonprofit status

·         2016       Awarded capacity-building grant from the U.S. Treasury

·         2016       Restructured board to include leaders in nonprofit housing realm

·         2017       Procured seed loan funds of $80,000 from JFCS

·         2017       Hired President & CEO, Amy Shir

·         2018       Expanded board to include 2 African American women banking professionals

·         2018       Applied for and received CDFI certification

·         2019       Topped the $1mm mark in loan funds obtained

·         2019       Awarded nearly $1mm in grant funds

·         2019       Awarded CDE certification to apply for impactful New Markets Tax Credit Allocations

 

LHOME was formed by two nonprofit organizations that were concerned about how under-invested Louisville was, and continues to be, in CDFI’s – Community Development Financial Institutions.  Judy Tiell, Executive Director of Jewish Family and Career Services and Cathy Hinko, Executive Director of the Metropolitan Housing Coalition formed LHOME in late 2011.  JFCS not only jumpstarted LHOME with loan funds, they also applied for and were awarded a $125,000 Technical Assistance grant from the CDFI Fund at the U.S. Treasury to build the capacity of LHOME, establish a track record of lending in the community, and to get certified by the CDFI Fund. In December of 2011, LHOME was incorporated as a 501c3 and JFCS provided critical loan funds to start micro-lending operations. LHOME was also given guidance by Faith Weekly at the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank, Louisville Branch.  Early support from the James Graham Brown Foundation was critical for infrastructure building. 

After a few years, the founding agencies realized that LHOME could benefit from a restructure of the Governing Board to bring in leadership with significant affordable housing experience.  In January 2017, the Governing Board was reconstituted to include Executive Leadership of the Housing Partnership, Inc. (HPI) and New Directions Housing Corporation.  Adam Hall retained a seat on the new Governing Board as a member of the Metropolitan Housing Coalitions’ Board.  This new Board hired Amy Shir, as LHOME’s Executive Director, in June 2017.

Under the leadership of Amy Shir, LHOME established a track record of lending and financial coaching services, diversified its loan products and funding streams, and added African American Board and staff members to be accountable to its Investment Area and community members. LHOME applied for CDFI Certification in March 2018 and was awarded it on June 7, 2018. In 2019, LHOME achieved status as a Certified CDE – Community Development Entity – opening the door to potential New Markets Tax Credit allocations for Louisville.  

LHOME receives grants and loan funds from a variety of sources – financial institutions, local foundations, corporations, the public sector, and individuals.  We have a variety of volunteer committees, including a community advisory committee that proposes new products and services and a loan review committee, comprising individuals with lending expertise.  Join us today and promote small business and homeownership for ALL Louisvillians, regardless of their race, socio-economic status, or geography.