LISC National

LISC Lending

Lending is an essential instrument in LISC’s community development toolkit. As one of the largest community development financial institutions (CDFI) in the nation, we work in partnership with local grassroots groups, for-profit developers and government agencies to finance programs and projects that will have a positive, long-term impact.

We Want Your Projects to Work

LISC has a variety of flexible lending products designed to help local groups bring development projects to fruition. Our loans cover every phase of development, from predevelopment to permanent financing. We are committed to working together with developers to get projects done, whether it entails building affordable housing or a school or launching a retail or commercial venture. Below is a summary of what we offer.

Please keep in mind that terms are subject to change and all loans must go through underwriting and credit approval process.

Loans for Housing

  • Rental Housing: This financing is for the preservation and development of affordable multifamily rental housing as well as market rate housing in certain markets that serves a broader community development purpose.
  • For Sale Housing: Often partnering with public sector housing agencies and development entities, this financing is designed to foster home ownership for low-income residents and families, and includes new construction, home repair, and manufactured housing.

Loans for Education

  • Charter Schools: LISC finances facilities for high-quality charter schools that offer educational choice to low-income families in historically under-performing school districts.
  • Child Care Centers: LISC provides financing for the development and improvement of early childhood centers serving low-income children and families.

Loans for Health

  • Health Care: LISC provides access to quality health care by financing community-based health care facilities nationwide.
  • Healthy Foods: With resources from the CDFI Fund’s Healthy Food Financing Initiative, LISC provides low-cost financing for projects that increase access to healthy food, primarily via retail food outlets such as supermarkets or food coops in federally-designated food deserts.

Loans for Business

  • Kiva Crowdfunded Loans: Through a national partnership with Kiva, LISC sponsors a one-to-one match fund that helps business owners reach their crowdfunded loan goal on Kiva’s platform. Borrowers must work with a LISC Trustee to qualify for the matching funds. Loan sizes range from $0 to $10,000 and are made at a 0% interest rate to both start-up and existing businesses. The proceeds can be used for working capital, equipment and inventory.
  • LISC Economic Development loans: LISC offers Accelerated Business Loans, Permanent Working Capital Loans and Leasehold Improvement/FF&E Loans to existing businesses within LISC communities. Loan amounts range from $25,000 to $500,000.
  • Maker Space Loans: LISC provides commercial property acquisition and construction loans to multi-tenant maker spaces. Loan amounts range from $500,000 - $3,000,000.  LISC considers a maker space an adaptive reuse of old industrial buildings, warehouses and large commercial spaces to a multi-tenant facility. The spaces are characterized by small commercial rental units, short term leases, common areas and shared equipment typically used for business incubation, light/artisanal manufacturing and technology businesses.
  • Commercial Real Estate Loans: LISC provides acquisition and construction loans for commercial and mixed-use projects. Loan amounts range from $500,000 - $5,000,000.

Loans for Nonprofit Organizations

  • Nonprofit /Other: LISC provides working capital lines of credit and a variety of financing products for the development and/or improvement of buildings occupied by our nonprofit partners in their service provisions.

Lending by Type of Product

  • Predevelopment: Early stage investments in planning, design, and environmental and structural assessments for projects that are proceeding to construction. Proceeds are used to pay due diligence expenses, deposits and other predevelopment costs.
  • Acquisition: Financing to help pay the purchase price and closing costs for property acquisition. These loans are generally made when construction and permanent financing have been secured or preliminarily committed.
  • Construction: Loans to projects, either as a sole source of financing or in concert with other lenders. Construction loans are provided for hard and soft building and improvement costs, including new construction, substantial or moderate renovations, and leasehold improvements.
  • Mini-Permanent: Longer-term, partially amortizing loans for certain projects, including rental housing, community facilities and economic development projects. LISC’s mini-permanent loan is typically originated as a construction loan that converts to mini-perm when certain conditions are met, such as issuance of a certificate of occupancy.
  • Permanent: Long-term financing or refinancing of acquisition, construction and renovation projects in low-income areas or that serve low-income populations for several project types, including the rental housing, charter schools, health centers, commercial and nonprofit asset classes.
  • Bridge: Financing to bridge the timing gap between expenses needing current payment and receipt of cash from committed or anticipated sources of capital not yet available, including capital campaign commitments, public contracts or note proceeds, earned developer fees and tax credit capital contributions.
  • Working Capital: Financing to fill credit gaps for our strongest borrowers by providing flexible working capital lines of credit to meet organizational cash flow needs or pay project-based expenses.


Michael Alexander, Investment Support