Fannie Mae Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge 2022

Through the Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge, Fannie Mae has awarded over $7 million since 2018 to support innovative projects that are tackling the challenges of affordable housing from different angles. Are you the next awardee?

Advancing greater equity in housing is rooted in Fannie Mae’s mission and integral to our environmental, social, and governance strategy. This is why we are proud to announce the launch of the Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge 2022: Advancing Racial Equity in Housing (IC22), a $5 million competition to identify innovative projects promoting racial equity in housing in the United States.

Advancing Racial Equity in Housing

Through the Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge 2022, a $5 million competition to promote racial equity in housing, Fannie Mae will select and award contracts to solvers who are implementing and scaling innovative ideas that contribute to a more equitable housing system in America.

IC22 will award contracts to organizations and individuals implementing or scaling projects that address barriers that many Black renters, homebuyers, and homeowners face, specifically related to the insufficient supply of quality affordable housing options, insufficient funds, and credit challenges. We invite ideas that respond to one of the following statements:

Potential solutions may include but are not limited to:

  • Execute innovative and/or cost-effective construction methods such as manufactured housing, modular housing, and 3D printed housing
  • Implement programs that incentivize affordable rental or home purchase
  • Reimagine or repurpose current buildings/lots to create new affordable supply

Potential solutions may include but are not limited to:

  • Implement and measure the impact of matched-savings program and other models to build reserves for pre- and post-purchase costs
  • Create/develop cross-sector partnerships that accelerate wealth building for very low-, low-, and moderate-income families
  • Design and test new models to reduce costs to close, application fees, move-in fees, security deposits, etc.
  • Implement education programs, tools, or partnerships that provide access to capital

Potential solutions may include but are not limited to:

  • Leverage credit evaluations that include non-traditional trade lines such as rent and utility payment reporting
  • Use innovative approaches to credit counseling services that address an individual’s low credit score and credit invisibility
  • Implement innovative underwriting practices to increase accessibility for prospective Black homebuyers
  • Develop or enhance platforms to allow landlords, property management or real estate investment companies to streamline positive rental reporting

IC22 builds on the previous Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge, a nationwide competition that awarded over $7 million to 13 organizations to advance innovative projects that linked affordable housing to education, health, and economic opportunities.