CPC Deploys Nearly $940 Million to Support More Than 260 Affordable Housing Projects

Real Estate In-Depth | August 4, 2021

Rafael E. Cestero, president and CEO of Community Preservation Corp.

NEW YORK—The Community Preservation Corporation (CPC) announced on Aug. 2 that it had deployed approximately $937 million in capital to support impactful housing and community development projects during a record-breaking 2021 fiscal year that ran from July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021.

CPC’s work across its construction, permanent, and agency lending and investing platforms financed 8,400 units, nearly 80% of which were affordable to households earning at or below 80% Area Median Income (AMI).

In addition to its work to finance the creation and preservation of multifamily housing in underserved areas, CPC also launched its ACCESS initiative to invest in Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) development entrepreneurs, partnered with New York State to administer COVID relief funding to small rental building owners and through its sustainability practice the company continued to move the industry towards sustainable construction and de-carbonization of the built environment.

“I am incredibly proud that we were able to leverage our mission-driven work and the capital we provide to create new economic opportunity at a time when communities were struggling to recover from the enormous toll of COVID-19,” said Rafael E. Cestero, president and CEO of CPC. “Each loan and investment tells a story of the outcomes of the housing that gets built, the small BIPOC developer that’s able to grow their business, and the tenants who have safe affordable housing. They reflect CPC’s deep commitment to our mission and the transformative impact that we’re able to have within communities and on peoples’ lives.”

CPC’s construction lending platform provided more than $464 million in loan funding to developers of both affordable and workforce housing across every region of New York State. In 26 counties, CPC provided flexible capital to advance housing projects to revitalize historic downtowns, to create and preserve affordable and supportive housing for our most vulnerable populations, and to invest in the small multifamily rental stock.

Roughly 2,400 units, or approximately 80% of the total units financed through CPC’s construction lending are affordable to households earning at or below 80% AMI. This included 1,450 affordable units in New York City and 650 units in neighborhoods throughout upstate. Additionally, more than half of the total projects financed through CPC’s construction lending were sustainable, energy efficient construction or retrofits, helping to reduce the carbon footprint of communities and leading to better outcomes for tenants and cost savings for owners.

The company’s sustainability practice continued to drive the real estate industry and built environment towards carbon neutrality and sustainability, financing 1,600 sustainable, high-performance units across its FY21 lending portfolio, and hosted a three-day virtual Sustainability Summit with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority to provided attendees from across the real estate industry with the tools to better understand the challenges and opportunities of sustainable development and portfolio management.

As an equity investor, CPC’s goal is to be a responsible, long-term steward of affordable and workforce housing that serves moderate- and low-income tenants. In November 2020, as an equity partner in a larger development team, CPC and its partners closed on the financing for the NYCHA Manhattan portfolio, beginning a roughly three-year process that will see 38 buildings and more than 1,710 apartments across 16 separate public housing properties go through a massive rehabilitation and revitalization plan. This mission-aligned project will preserve a critical piece of New York City’s affordable housing stock, and bring long-term stability to the nearly 3,000 people who call these developments home, CPC officials stated.

In response to the social justice movement and the disparate impact of COVID on communities of color, CPC created and launched its ACCESS initiative. ACCESS is a $20-million program providing financial resources, capacity building opportunities, and technical assistance to BIPOC entrepreneurs who have historically faced barriers to entry in the real estate development market, with the goal of promoting and enabling greater racial diversity within the industry. In under a year, the initiative has deployed nearly $4 million in flexible capital and technical assistance to black and brown developers in New York City, Rochester, Poughkeepsie and Syracuse.

CPC through its ACCESS initiative, also partnered with New York State to launch the Legacy Cities program that will transfer portfolios of blighted, land bank-owned single-family properties to local developers with a preference for M/WBEs. Following rehabilitation, sales will prioritize purchasers of color and low-income household, helping to tackle the issue of generational wealth building through homeownership. CPC, again partnering with the state, responded to the COVID-19 crisis by successfully implementing the NY Forward program, deploying $5.7 million across 123 loans to help small building owners make ends meet through pandemic-related rental income loss.

CPC’s national agency lending subsidiary, CPC Mortgage Company, originated more than $425 million through its portfolio of Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, and HUD/FHA mortgage products to multifamily building owners in 17 states across the country. Through its focus on the unique financial needs of affordable housing and small buildings, CPC Mortgage Company was able to bring flexible, affordable Agency capital to new borrowers and communities in need, with more than 70% of the mortgages supporting housing that is affordable to tenants at or below 80% of area median income.