Mayor Frey announces $5.8M investment addressing racial gaps in homeownership

August 3, 2023

Today, Mayor Jacob Frey and the City of Minneapolis announced a $5.8 million investment in the Minneapolis Homes program. A staple in Mayor Frey’s affordable housing portfolio, Minneapolis Homes increases affordable homeownership opportunities across the city and helps residents access, create, and sustain affordable homeownership while eliminating racial disparities.  

Today, the City Council unanimously approved the multi-million-dollar investment, and the mayor will soon sign and approve the action. This investment will allow the City to convert 21 vacant lots or buildings into 40 affordable homes. Through the Council approval, an additional 18 project sites were awarded exclusive development rights with future plans for an additional 47 affordable homes.

“The quickest way to build generational wealth is through homeownership,” said Mayor Frey. “We know historically, our Black and Brown communities have been red-lined out of neighborhoods – and pushed away from the opportunity to buy and own a home. Through the 2040 plan and the Minneapolis Homes program, we have changed that trajectory and have been helping our BIPOC families and residents access and buy a home to call their own. Thank you to our City staff and community partners who continue to show up and do this life-changing work for our residents.” 

“I always love seeing the ways we are increasing perpetually affordable homeownership and opportunities for our residents,” said Council Member Jeremiah Ellison. “This is the second year in a row that we are seeing a large number of Northside homes going through this program. This is one solution to help individuals achieve homeownership. As one of the Northside councilmembers, it is always exciting to see the City put so much effort into solving issues on the Northside.”  

Minneapolis Homes is an umbrella program with products that help households access and sustain affordable homeownership in Minneapolis. Minneapolis Homes was created with the vision of eliminating disparities in homeownership so that all families have access to the wealth-building opportunities that homeownership provides.  

Through the sale of City-owned property and financing, Minneapolis Homes generates affordable ownership units, assists households in obtaining homeownership, and supports homeowners in maintaining their houses. The program also provides tools that Minneapolis residents can use to locate the housing that best suits their requirements and works to develop long-term solutions to address our city’s housing needs.  

With today’s approval of $5.8M in funding awards to small and emerging developers, Minneapolis Homes has funded 220 affordable homeownership units over the past few years. Between 2020-2022, the Minneapolis Homes program yielded positive results including:  

  • Over 75% of Minneapolis Homes homebuyers are BIPOC
  • The average income of households served is approximately 60% AMI
  • More than 50% of program developers are BIPOC led

Additionally, over 10% of units will be built to Net Zero or Passive Home standards, helping Mayor Frey and the City achieve climate equity goals. 

“Our incredible CPED staff have been driving on the goals laid out in the Minneapolis 2040 plan, making sure that our residents can access affordable, safe, and stable housing,” said Erik Hansen, Interim Director of the Community Planning and Economic Development department for the City of Minneapolis. “Minneapolis has made significant investments in affordable housing work over the past couple years, and the positive results speak for themselves. We are seeing record-setting rental affordable housing production year-over-year and our Minneapolis Homes program is leading the way for BIPOC homeownership across the city. I want to thank Mayor Frey for his ongoing commitment to affordable housing and the City Council for passing this new Minneapolis Homes funding.”   

“Addressing the racial homeownership disparity gap requires a collective community effort,” said Elfric Porte, Housing Director for the City’s Community Planning and Economic Development department. “We thank our community partners who are working with us to build affordable ownership opportunities for Minneapolis residents and supporting our 75% rate of service to BIPOC households. We will continue this critical work thanks to the support of Mayor Frey, City Council, and funding partners.”  

Housing prices are increasing at an alarmingly higher rate than incomes, making homeownership out of reach for most households particularly low to moderate-income households. Funding the Minneapolis Homes financing program will provide development gap assistance to make affordable ownership opportunities happen.  

In addition to City funding, sources leveraged for the Minneapolis Homes program include federal funds (HOME, CDBG, and American Rescue Plan Act), state funds from Minnesota Housing, county dollars from Hennepin County, and private capital from local developers, organizations, and area banks. 

Find more information on the new Minneapolis Homes investment.