LISC Launches Second Charlotte Affordable Housing Fund
Charlotte Housing Opportunity Investment Fund II Welcomes New Investor First Citizens Bank with a $5 Million Commitment
CHARLOTTE, N.C., October 18, 2023 /3BL/ - As the affordable housing gap continues to widen in Charlotte, the Charlotte office of Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC Charlotte) announces the launch of the second iteration of the Charlotte Housing Opportunity Investment Fund (CHOIF II). The funding will support both new construction and existing affordable housing developments. Building upon the success of CHOIF I, CHOIF II welcomes a $5 million investment from new partner, First Citizens Bank, joining commitments from existing partners Ally, Duke Energy and Fifth Third Bank.
Launched in 2019, Foundation for the Carolinas (FFTC) alongside LISC Charlotte raised $53 million in investments for CHOIF I from partners such as Ally, Bank of America, Truist and Wells Fargo. To date, CHOIF I has supported more than 1,500 units of affordable housing for Charlottefamilies. Nearly 95 percent of the units are affordable to households earning 80 percent or less of the area median income ($75,350 for a family of four), and the homes must remain affordable for 20-30 years.
CHOIF II, like CHOIF I, will work closely with the City of Charlotte, to align with the city’s shared objective of increasing both the quality and quantity of affordable housing options, thereby fostering economic mobility within the community. Fifth Third Bank was the first to commit to the fund, catalyzing investments from original partners Ally Charitable Foundation and Duke Energy, and new partner First Citizens Bank. The partnership between LISC and First Citizens Bank also represents the first investment of its kind for the Bank.
“We are proud to partner with LISC, an organization with such deep roots and connections in the Charlotte community. We strongly feel that our organizations are aligned in our steadfast commitment to affordable housing and are excited for what we can accomplish together,” said Mike Atkinson, senior director of community development at First Citizens Bank.1
The $5M investment is part of the First Citizen’s $16B community benefits plan, announced in 2021. This five-year plan will reinvest into low- and moderate-income communities of color, by catalyzing affordable housing creation, small business lending, and community development.
CHOIF II pools capital in the form of grants, equity, and low-interest debt to make investments in and loans to developers seeking to preserve or provide affordable housing to families in Charlotte. The fund’s primary emphasis will be on mixed-income, multi-family rental developments, targeting families with incomes ranging from 30% and 120% of Area Median Income (AMI). CHOIF II will be managed by LISC Fund Management, LLC, an affiliate of LISC.
"We are thankful investors trust in our mission and dedication to maintaining the integrity of the process to oversee the CHOIF capital. LISC and CHOIF are committed to serving a broad range of residents, from restaurant workers to early career teachers facing the challenge of affording Charlotte's high rents," said Ralphine Caldwell, executive director of LISC Charlotte. “We are proud that developers have embraced our partnership with the City of Charlotte that created a one-stop-shop with a request for proposal (RFP) that aligns with both the City’s and LISC’s criteria.”
Establishing strategic partnerships plays a crucial role in fulfilling the fund’s long-term mission. For instance, CHOIF’s partnership with the City of Charlotte’s Housing Trust Fund offers developers streamlined access to multiple forms of capital aligned with a common mission. Simultaneously, LISC, working alongside its funding partners, can provide developers with the necessary capital to bring their projects to fruition. This approach leads to the creation of affordable homes, enabling residents to save extra funds and achieve greater financial mobility.
“We are inspired by the continued commitment from our existing partners to CHOIF II and excited to warmly welcome First Citizens as a new supporter.” said George Ashton, president of LISC Fund Management. “Together, along with future partners, we can change the future of Charlotte towards a place where residents and families can thrive and grow.”
For more information about the Charlotte Housing Opportunity Fund II and its goals, please visit
About LISC Charlotte
LISC is one of the country’s largest community development organizations, helping forge vibrant, resilient communities across America. LISC works with communities and partners to close systemic gaps in health, wealth and opportunity and advance racial equity so that people and places can thrive. Since its founding in 1979, LISC has invested $26.7 billion to create more than 463,000 affordable homes and apartments, develop 78.5 million square feet of retail, community and educational space and help tens of thousands of people find employment and improve their finances. LISC Charlotte supports affordable housing and economic development in Charlotte and its target neighborhood, Historic West End, with a focus on catalyzing economic opportunity while also protecting long-time residents from displacement.
For media inquiries related to LISC Charlotte or CHOIF I/II:
Catherine Carlstedt - Marketing, Strategic Investments
For inquiries related to Fifth Third:
Tiffaney Hardy - Corporate Communications