CFHomes Baltimore Affordable Housing Initiative

United States of America

Last updated 12 May 2020, by Impactyield.

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City First Homes, a Washington D.C.-based affordable housing non-profit, will partner with the Baltimore City Department of Housing and Community Development, City First Enterprises and local for-profit developers to buy distressed single-family homes, renovate them to high standards, and then maintain them in perpetuity as affordable housing.

The program will focus on supporting low- and moderate-income (LMI) individuals and families utilizing a proven program of integrated services for both the residents and the houses assets.

CFHomes will acquire 450 units of recently renovated, occupied single-family houses, using a single transaction to create a substantial portfolio of quality affordable rental housing. By purchasing this existing collection of occupied properties with stabilized positive net cash flows and by retaining the existing property management company, CFHomes will significantly reduce the typical risks involved in undertaking such a broad and significant affordable housing initiative. The program will offer a continuum of rental housing, rent-to-own conversions, and direct homeownership for city residents. The homes will be maintained as affordable in perpetuity by CFHomes for successive generations of future residents.

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Fund status

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Financial description

We will finance the acquisition primarily through the use of debt. The portfolio has been consistently generating approximately 8% NOI, which provides significant debt service coverage. We have received three term sheets for senior debt from national lenders that will take us to approximately 65% LTV on the approximately $52 million deal price. We also have a term sheet from a national CDFI (community development financial institution/non-profit lender) for sub-debt that will take us to approximately 80-85% of the purchase price. The seller has offered to stay in for 5% of the purchase price as equity. That means we have to raise approximately $5.2-$7.7 million in grant funding – which works out to under $18,000 per house.
In addition, the City of Baltimore Housing Commissioner and his team have been working to provide CFHomes with a payment-in-lieu-of-taxes (PILOT) program on the initiative. CFHomes projects that this type of program would reduce the tax payment from approximately $550,000 annually by 50% -- generating an annual subsidy of about $225,000 to support operational expenses/services to residents. Based on our conversations with Baltimore Housing and Community Development, the City believes that this project is eligible for this type of program under the existing laws governing PILOTs. Ultimately the PILOT will require approval of the City’s Board of Estimates.

9 years

of track record


the year funded

50,000,000 USD


Asset manager

SDG goals

SDG targets

Equal rights to ownership basic services technology and economic resources

Safe and affordable housing

Free primary and secondary education

Impact Category


Key performance indicators

Fund overview

Asset manager: City First Homes

Product track record: Fund has 9 years of track record

Target IRR: 2%

Committed Capital: 800,000 USD (US Dollar)

Target return category: Below risk-adjusted market-rate of return

Fund domicile:

Product status:


Inception year: 2014

Vintage year: 2014

Target region: , , ,

Target close date: 01/06/2015

Product term: n.a.

Assets under management: 50,000,000 USD (US Dollar)

Investment size: Min: 500,000; Max: 0; Avg: 0

Co-investment policy:

Currency of investments:

Currency for fund / product figures:

Fund investments to date: 0

Fund investments to date exited or repaid: 0

Management fee: n.a.

Carried interest: n.a.

Hurdle rate: none%

GIIN Investors' Council Investment: No

Limited Partners / Investors: CityFirst Enterprises, City of Baltimore Department of Housing and Community Development

Limited Partner / Investor Type: Development Finance Institution (DFI), Endowments/Foundations, Family Office, Pension Funds, Other Institutional Investors, Retail Investors




Phone number: (202) 243-7159

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Impact Performance


Impact thesis

CFHomes will maintain all 440 homes as affordable for low and moderate income residents in perpetuity – without requiring any ongoing subsidies. CFHomes will also bring a layer of supportive social services to residents, including financial literacy and credit counseling, but also including group discounts for necessities like utilities and transportation. A portion of the homes will be allocated to extremely low income (ELI) residents or to provide transitional housing for formerly homeless individuals who are on the road to recovery.
CFHomes will utilize experienced property management to preserve the properties as high quality living spaces for residents, ensuring all routine maintenance is addressed in a timely and professional manner.
The houses in the portfolio that CFHomes is planning to acquire have all been renovated within the last 5 years, including green renovations such as energy efficient appliances, new windows, and better insulation. The developer silver-coats their roofs, which both extends their life and reduce heat absorption/air conditioning expenses. The developer further installs 90%+ efficiency HVAC furnaces during renovation and all toilets, faucets, and showerheads are low-flow to conserve water usage. While there are no comparable standards in the single-family sector to the multifamily LEED criteria, these improvements significantly reduce energy consumption and lower utilities costs for the residents.

Impact Management


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Term Description:


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