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March 25, 2019

When Opportunity Knocks, We Open Doors

Catherine Evans
Article By
Catherine Evans, VP SBL Underwriting

Housing affordability is an uphill battle – but the Small Balance Loan (SBL) team will not be deterred. We wake up every day fighting to protect affordable housing. One way that we can tackle affordability, as a business and as a nation, is by investing in Qualified Opportunity Zones.

Opportunity Zones, which were added to the tax code in December 2017, are economically distressed communities where new investments may be eligible for preferential tax treatment. Specifically, individuals who invest in these communities through a Qualified Opportunity Fund can defer taxes on investment gains while supporting the communities who need it most.

There are now Opportunity Zone designations across all 50 states and five U.S. territories that provide a great avenue for economic development and job creation. In fact, SBL funded 595 loans in 2018 (approximately $1.6 billion) for properties in Opportunity Zones across 37 states. While the program is still new, it shows great promise – investments in these neighborhoods are a meaningful step toward protecting affordable housing.

You can learn more about Opportunity Zones by reading our recent report here. Also, to find out why these areas align with our mission, and the importance of providing safe, secure housing to everyone who needs it, watch this brief video.

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