2022 In Review

Celebrating our biggest year yet!

What a year it has been indeed!

While it feels nearly impossible to condense an entire year into one newsletter, we couldn’t close 2022 without taking a look back at the highlights from this year.

Join us in celebrating CIC’s biggest year to date, and we’re just getting started!

A national leader in eviction prevention

Over the course of 2 years, we were involved in a collaborative effort to administer federal funding to prevent evictions related to the economic impact of the pandemic throughout all of Pima County. As one of the most efficient programs in the nation, CIC and our partners facilitated disbursement of all of the City of Tucson’s ERA 1 and ERA 2 funds, as well as more than $22.5 million of additional reallocated funding from the state. In June of this year, we transitioned the Eviction Prevention Program to Pima County.

Since the start of the program we distributed $64+ million in rental and utility funding, assisted over 13,500 households, landlords and helped 30,000 residents remain in housing.

We owe much of the success of the program to our dedicated and willing community partners. Private, public and nonprofit sectors as well as private citizens came together selflessly to care for one another in the face of the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic. Thank you: City of TucsonFamily Housing Resources, Sunnyside Foundation, Catholic Community Services, ISDA, Tucson Urban League, Inc., Primavera Foundation, International Rescue Committee, Interfaith Community Services, Chicanos Por La CausaValley Assistance Services and Compass Affordable Housing.

Read our IMPACT REPORT

Expanded the Mortgage Credit Certificate program statewide

For 30+ years, the Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) program has been administered by CIC, and its sister organization, Family Housing Resources. The program reduces the cost of owning a home by allowing first-time homebuyers to claim up to $2,000 of their annual mortgage interest as a federal tax credit – each year and every year they live in their homes. This means that MCC’s can save homeowners up to $50,000+ over the life of their mortgages!

CIC has issued 7,000+ certificates to date, saving Arizona homeowners millions of dollars and this year, we expanded the program statewide! We look forward to empowering future homeowners throughout the state of Arizona. Check out this short video that explains how this important program works.

Learn more at: cictucson.org/mcc

The BIPOC Community Managed Loan Fund for Small Business Owners continues to grow!

Since launching the BIPOC Community Managed Loan Fund program, we’ve received 100+ applications, with requests for $700,000+ to help long underserved entrepreneurs of color in Southern Arizona grow their businesses and thrive. 

We were thrilled to share that in 2022 we fundraised over $100,000 to support this program. The revolving fund that started with just $2,700 in donations from CIC’s own staff  now sits at $380,000 and has helped 26 small businesses in Southern Arizona.

This funding is critical to our mission’s success and helped us get closer to our goal of building the fund to $1 million by 2025.

Check out this short video to learn more about this program.

CIC Tucson was named Social Impact Champion of the Year!

We were honored to be recognized by the selection committee of the Tucson Metro Chamber Copper Cactus Awards as this year’s TEP Social Impact Copper Cactus Champion. This is the second time in three years, CIC has earned this recognition and it is one of the only times that a nonprofit has been honored with a Copper Cactus Award three years in a row (we were named the regions Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Champion in 2021 for the launch of our BIPOC Community Managed Loan Fund).

While we don’t do this work for the awards, this was a special moment to stop and celebrate everyone who has contributed to making our programs worthy of recognition; most notably, the community’s best and most accomplished social service agencies who partnered with us for the Eviction Prevention program. Thank you to the City of TucsonFamily Housing Resources, Sunnyside Foundation, Catholic Community Services, ISDA, Tucson Urban League, Inc., Primavera Foundation, International Rescue Committee, Interfaith Community Services, Chicanos Por La CausaValley Assistance Services and Compass Affordable Housing

This program would not have been possible without the deep commitment of the highly skilled staff at the nonprofit organizations & government entities.

2022 brought an amazing year of success and impact for CIC, none of which would have been possible without the collaboration and support of trusted partners. We resolve to fill the coming year with opportunities and prosperity for all residents of Southern Arizona.

– Danny Knee and the CIC Team

CIC’s Homeownership Team Has Been Busy!

Have You Seen Us Lately?

Community Investment Corporation’s (CIC) Homeownership Team has been busy!

CIC is now the only organization facilitating the Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) program for the entire State of Arizona. We have been out and about to spread the word and help homebuyers in all counties purchase a home.

Did you miss the August MCC info session?

Watch the recording on YouTube!

Recent Wins!

It’s easy to get lost in the weeds of everyday life and forget how impactful our work is, so we want to share some positive news with you.

  • In mid-August, the max benefit for the Essential Worker grant DOUBLED to $5,000.
  • The number of households receiving the Essential Worker grant fund is increasing; 16 Essential Workers became homeowners in August.
  • We just added a new easy-to-use map to our website that makes finding target areas for the MCC program effortless. Take a look!
  • MSN.com featured CIC and the MCC program in A first-time homebuyer’s guide to Arizona.

Did you know homebuyers can use the MCC IN ADDITION TO other programs like Down Payment Assistance and the Essential Worker’s Fund? These programs not only bring homeownership within reach for some first-time homebuyers, they increase the buying power, which benefits the homeowner, the realtor, and the lender. It is truly a win-win-win situation!

Sign up for the last Mortgage Credit Certificate info session we’re hosting this year!

📅 Wednesday, November 9
⌚ 1-2 p.m.
💻 Zoom

At the Cross Section of Pride and Homeownership Month

As we near the end of June, and the corporate logos with rainbow overlays start to come down, we wanted to highlight an aspect of the LGBTQ+ experience that doesn’t often make the headlines – homeownership.

In addition to being Pride Month, June is also National Homeownership Month. For those that have tried, homebuying has been a rocky road for the last couple of years; whether you’ve been an aspiring buyer outbid by out-of-state investors swooping in with cash offers well-above the asking price, or more recently, a lender or realtor struggling with rising interest rates and reluctant buyers.

The homebuying process is not easy…full stop. At CIC, we have several programs, including our Down Payment Assistance and Mortgage Credit Certificate programs that aim to make home buying more affordable across Arizona, but there are additional barriers that members of LGBTQ+ community face.

According to this Forbes article, about 29% (of 1,538 members of LGBTQ+ community surveyed by Realtor.com) “reported they had experienced discrimination during the homebuying process or suspected they were victims of it.”

The Fair Housing Act of 1968 was created to protect homebuyers and renters against discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status and disability. However, it did not extend housing protections on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, excluding millions of Americans who identify as LGBTQ+.

The article goes on to explain that to avoid discrimination, many LGBTQ+ homebuyers often gravitate towards more urban areas where they feel safer. However real estate is increasingly unaffordable in city centers, prompting an exodus to the suburbs where they are forced to live in areas where they may feel less protected, under-represented or even un-welcome in order to access affordable housing.

Discrimination can also be much more subtle. In speaking with Mario Zuniga (pictured above), who administers the Mortgage Credit Certificate program at CIC and has gone through the home buying process many times with his husband, he pointed out that many loan applications in Arizona still end by requiring signatures from a “husband and wife”, or ask for gender identification, but only list “male or female.”
 
Mario shared a few suggestions to reduce heteronormativity in the home buying process. First, “take the time to get to know your buyers and let them tell you their story. Don’t make assumptions about the nature of the relationship based on gender, perhaps the buyers are friends or siblings.”
 
Additionally, think about making the language in your applications gender-neutral, with words like applicant, borrower, buyer, etc. If gender or familial relationship is not relevant to the resource you are providing, is it necessary to ask?
 
In conclusion, remember that while the dream of homeownership is baked into the DNA of being American, it can also be a scary and vulnerable process for people who don’t fit into the historically narrow definition of being the model American family. We challenge you to ask yourself “How can I ease the experience and leave assumptions out of the equation?”

On the market for a new home, contact our team to see if our programs can save you money!