Mission Asset Fund to Launch Security Deposit Loan Program for Underbanked with Support from Citi

  Mission Asset Fund to Launch Security Deposit Loan Program for Underbanked
  with Support from Citi

Business Wire

SAN FRANCISCO -- March 12, 2013

With founding support from Citi Community Development, the San Francisco
nonprofit Mission Asset Fund announced today that it is developing and will
soon launch an innovative savings and credit-building program to help
low-income, at-risk foster youth and reentry populations overcome financial
obstacles to securing safe and stable places to live. A pilot Security Deposit
Loan program will provide low-income, at-risk youth with the means to cover
their rental security deposits for their housing needs.

One in five young adults in California is underbanked^1 and often has little
savings to cover rent security deposits, creating real financial barriers to
securing housing. As part of the new program, Mission Asset Fund will partner
with landlords, nonprofit property managers, and community based organizations
that work with at-risk youth to transform security deposits into instruments
to build savings accounts and credit profiles. MAF will provide housing
partners with credit vouchers for security deposits and will then service the
interest-free loans, report repayment activity to credit bureaus, and return
the deposit at the end of the lease term to clients. By the end of the
program, young renters will have credit histories and seeded savings, putting
them in a stronger position to rent apartments on their own.

“We are thrilled that Citi is supporting MAF’s work to help low-income
individuals become visible, active and successful participants in the
financial mainstream. Once again, Citi is leading the economic development
field by investing early in innovative projects that will impact people’s
financial lives. We could not want for a better, more committed partner,” says
Jose Quinonez of Mission Asset Fund.

“A key part of improving one’s economic potential is living in a safe and
affordable home, yet the need to post a security deposit creates a barrier
that is far too high for many lower income individuals,” said Bob Annibale,
Citi’s Global Director of Microfinance & Community Development. “The Security
Deposit Loan program not only provides the ability to finance the up-front
cost of a security deposit with no interest, but Mission Asset Fund will also
use the loan proceeds to help borrowers boost their savings and build a credit
history that is important for getting hired, starting a business, and
purchasing large necessities.”

Citi provided $125,000 in founding support for the Security Deposit Loan
program, and is also supporting the development of a number of social lending
models developed by Mission Asset Fund, including Lending Circles and Lending
Circles for Citizenship. More information is available at
www.missionassetfund.org.

About Mission Asset Fund

Mission Asset Fund is a nonprofit organization helping financially excluded
communities – particularly low-income and immigrant families – become visible,
active, and successful participants in the U.S. financial mainstream. Citi has
also been a key supporter of Mission Asset Fund's innovative social lending
model, Lending Circles.

About Citi Community Development

Citi Community Development is leading Citi’s commitment to achieve economic
empowerment and growth for underserved individuals, families and communities
by expanding access to financial products and services, and building
sustainable business solutions and innovative partnerships. Our focus areas
include: commercial and philanthropic funding; innovative financial products
and services; and collaborations with institutions that expand access to
financial products and services for low-income and underserved communities.
For more information, please visit www.citicommunitydevelopment.com.

^1 FDIC’s 2011 National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households Survey

Contact:

Media:
Mission Asset Fund
Jose Quinonez, 415-315-9869
jose@missionassetfund.org
or
Tara Robinson, 415-670-9103
tara@missionassetfund.org
or
Citi Community Development
David Roskin, 212-559-4767
david.roskin@citi.com
 
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