Independent Bank makes $2M affordable housing investment

Brad Kessel Courtesy Independent Bank

Independent Bank is making a $2 million investment to support affordable housing development in partnership with Cinnaire and the Michigan Bankers Association Service Corporation.

The investments, announced last week, are part of Independent Bank’s commitment to expanding access to high-quality affordable housing, a key driver of economic mobility and family stability.

“At Independent Bank, we see tremendous value in providing affordable housing solutions for all of the members of our communities,” said Brad Kessel, president and CEO. “We are honored to partner with Cinnaire and the Michigan Bankers Association Service Corporation on this wonderful initiative to increase the availability of affordable housing in Michigan.”

Cinnaire and the Michigan Bankers Association Service Corporation (MBASC) recently announced the closing of the partnership’s sixth affordable housing investment fund — the largest fund in its joint history — generating $16 million to support the development and rehabilitation of nine apartment communities across Michigan. These developments will provide more than 915 units of affordable housing to local communities, including at Brentwood Apartments in Belding (50 units), Cliffview Apartments in Rochester Hills (126 senior units), Greenbriar Apartments in Greenville (40 units), Lake Superior Village in Marquette (116 units), Meadow Ridge Apartments in Marlette (24 senior units), Scottish Pines in Alma (24 senior units), Village at LaFranier Woods in Traverse City/Garfield Township (115 senior units) and Mt. Vernon Apartments in Lansing (140 units).

Since 2010, Cinnaire and MBASC have partnered to create five previous low-income housing tax credit equity funds raising more than $58 million. In that decade, the partners raised $74 million from 27 community banks, helping to finance the new construction or rehabilitation of 52 apartment communities, creating nearly 4,000 affordable housing units in 41 cities and small towns across Michigan. These investments resulted in more than $700 million in economic impact, including the creation and retention of 3,700 jobs.

Independent Bank previously invested in two equity funds sponsored by Cinnaire and MBASC.

In return for their equity investments, the banks receive federal tax credits, along with other tax benefits. In addition to reducing their corporate federal income taxes, banks benefit from positive Community Reinvestment Act consideration from regulators.

“Tax credit investing allows banks to do well by doing good,” said Tom Edmiston, Cinnaire senior vice president of business development. “Our partnership with the MBASC has supported thousands of affordable housing units across Michigan, creating positive impact for hundreds of families, seniors and people with special needs. At a time when 1 in 4 households struggle to pay rent, preserving and developing affordable housing is more important than ever. We look forward to working with Independent Bank to ensure Michigan residents have access to safe, affordable housing.”

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