Driving economic & social progress

Access to capital

We are deeply involved in community development work related to affordable housing, small business lending and neighborhood revitalization.

Community Development Banking

For example, Bank of America Merrill Lynch Community Development Banking provided more than $4.5 billion in loans, tax credit equity investments and other real estate development solutions to create housing for individuals, families, veterans, seniors and the previously homeless across the United States.

In 2017, the Community Development Banking group financed several high-impact projects, including Beverly's Place in Brooklyn, NY. This newly constructed 72-unit affordable housing development includes 43 units for disabled and/or homeless individuals and families. They also provided financing for the Howard Levine Child Development Center at Renaissance West in Charlotte, NC. This 22,000-square foot new construction will serve low-income working parents by providing full daycare for over 150 children ages six weeks to five years old.

Learn more about our Community Development Banking efforts.

Community Development Financial Institutions

Often a good source of capital for those who may not qualify for a traditional bank loan, community development financial institutions (CDFIs) are private-sector loan centers that offer financing for small businesses, affordable housing, and other economic revitalization projects, primarily within low- and moderate-income communities. We provided over $1.5 billion to more than 260 CDFIs across the U.S. We underwrite loans to CDFIs and often provide philanthropic support from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation to help offset operating costs.

In 2016, we announced with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) a relending program to provide more than $400 million in long-term, low-cost financing for community development financial institutions (CDFIs) working in impoverished rural and Native American communities. The Uplift America Community Facilities Relending Program will facilitate the construction of schools, health care centers, child care facilities and other much-needed services in communities with limited infrastructure development and persistent poverty.

We also connect capital to women entrepreneurs through the Tory Burch Foundation Capital Program. Learn more about how we are helping women entrepeneurs grow their businesses in the U.S.

Find a CDFI and learn more about CDFIs and how Bank of America provides access to capital to build thriving communities.

Lending to small and medium-sized businesses

Small- and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy and access to capital is critical to their success. We are at the forefront of helping small and medium-sized businesses position themselves for smart growth. We're increasing our lending to small and medium-sized businesses and extending credit through other innovative approaches such as loans and investments to community development financial institutions.

Learn more about our work with small businesses.

Community development lending and investment goal progress

In 2009, we established a 10-year, $1.5 trillion community development lending and investment goal, supporting communities across the U.S to track progress in areas focusing on LMI. The goal promotes economic growth in four key categories: 1) affordable housing, 2) small business, 3) consumer lending, and 4) economic development. We have loaned and invested $910 billion from 2009 to 2017 including $54 billion in 2017. However, we recognize the economic shift of the past few years—including a more normalized housing market, lower credit demand and stricter requirements for lending and credit—has put constraints on our overall results. We continue our ongoing commitment to lending and investing in low-and moderate-income communities including promoting economic progress in our communities by providing access to capital. And, we will look for ways to responsibly do that through our business and partnerships.

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