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September 9, 2020

Can This 'Best Kept Secret' Help Boost CRE's Financing, Tax Credits, Diversity And Equity?

As the industry continues to push for progress against structural racism while navigating a recession, Community Development Financial Institutions are becoming important commercial partners for developers and planners looking to revitalize distressed areas.

CDFIs, which provide financial services to underserved communities, have been around since the CDFI Fund was established as an agency of the Department of the Treasury in the mid-1990s. The fund promotes capital investment in low-income communities through direct awards, New Markets Tax Credit Program allocations and other initiatives.

The institutions provide crucial market intelligence about the communities they serve while increasing focus on providing equity for all local stakeholders, including women and BIPOC — all while knowing the latest tax credits for distressed areas, making them catnip for savvy development teams. 

Can This 'Best Kept Secret' Help Boost CRE's Financing, Tax Credits, Diversity And Equity?

Because CDFIs have to invest in properties and communities most in need of redevelopment, CDFIs do not face the same loan-to-value constraints as traditional banks regulated by agencies like the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. That makes them a more flexible financing option for both local investors and developers alike."If there is a…

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Cities In At Least 25 States Vie For HQ Of U.S. Space Command

Space Force got all the attention when President Donald Trump announced it in June 2019, but there’s another federal military agency that was announced last year: U.S. Space Command.

Whereas Space Force is a brand-new agency that will be part of the Air Force (like the Marine Corps is a part of the Navy) and have wide latitude, Space Command is technically a reactivation of an agency that was created in 1985 and will focus on combat operations in space, pulling members of the Air Force, Army, Navy and Marine Corps.

Cities In At Least 25 States Vie For HQ Of U.S. Space Command

Currently, a provisional headquarters for SPACECOM is located at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado, but the Air Force in May announced an open bidding process for a new, permanent home. SPACECOM is expected to move within five years.“Everything from commerce, transportation and tracking national security threats to…

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Origin Stories: Mint House Founder Will Lucas Is 3 Years Into CRE And Leveraging His Analytical Background

 

This series delves into the myriad ways people enter the commercial real estate industry and what contributes to their success.

Will Lucas is on job No. 1 in the commercial real estate industry. After spending several years in the finance world, the serial entrepreneur founded Mint House, which describes itself as an Airbnb-style startup for business travelers, in 2017. The company provides contactless, aparthotel accommodations with the high-end amenities and finishes that business travelers prefer in urban locations throughout the U.S.

Lucas co-founded First Help Financial, a financial services company in the auto space, after graduating from Duke University in 2006 with a bachelor's in economics, marketing and management. He followed that up with an MBA in finance and entrepreneurship from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 2012, and then spent years working in private equity. He also served as a principal at Prompt Growth, where he focused on working with and investing in digital businesses.

Though he had no formal real estate training or education, Lucas has found the skills and knowledge he gained elsewhere, especially in analytics, modeling, finances and fundraising, have served him well, though he wishes he'd known a bit more about construction before entering the industry.

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