Rise of the Rentals

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28 | Th e M Rep o RT Feature help getting their operations off the ground. "Unlike a bank that could go out and issue more stock or go into the bond market . . . CDFIs are much smaller entities. They don't have those resources," he said. "It's hard to get started unless you have some seed capital to get into the business. That's probably the big constraint that many CDFI loan funds face." One major bank that's gotten on board with the CDFI concept is Wells Fargo, which—in partner- ship with the Opportunity Finance Network—offers recognitions and grants to deserving institutions an- nually through the NEXT Awards for Opportunity Finance. The theme for the 2014 awards is "The Future of Housing Finance," putting a special focus on innovations in that field. Helping with the promotion of NEXT at Wells Fargo is Megan Teare, SVP of community lending and investing, who describes the bank's partnership with housing CDFIs as "robust." "What's really interesting about that is the CDFI industry was in housing finance really early on, [and] they have as an industry branched out into a number of different sec- tors," Teare said. "The other thing about CDFIs is they're really very innovative and often on the cutting edge in certain areas in community development." While some traditional lenders may see community lending as a threat to certain lines of business, both Loftin and King say there's a lot of oppor- tunity in bringing the two segments together, especially as the industry adopts a more serious attitude about preparing homebuyers mentally and financially for the responsibilities of homeownership—a step that adds costs for mortgage bankers in both time and money, but one that CDFIs already largely focus on. In the end, King said, everyone's goal is the same: "Strong communities make strong real estate markets. That's the starting point of commonality between anybody in the mortgage industry with any CDFI . . . . We're not here to take over the world. We're here to throw off some amount of benefit that spurs well-being in com- munities and families." s We've Gone Digital! Bringing Today's Lending Headlines into Focus, MReport Digital Puts Mortgage Banking News at Your Fingertips » ORIGINATIONS » SERVICING » ANALYTICS » SECONDARY MARKET Experts you trust. People you know. News you want. MReport is putting essential mortgage market news at your fingertips with our new digital edition, now available online via your smartphone, tablet, or computer. Enjoy the magazine at your desk, and tap into MReport Digital's easily accessible platform anywhere, anytime. Committed to giving originators, servicers, and all lending professionals access to smarter perspectives, MReport believes it's time to think differently about the mortgage industry. Because the American Dream is evolving . . . are you? Subscribe to MReport and MReport Digital now! Call 800.856.8060 or connect with us online at to take advantage of our special introductory offer!

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