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Below are some commonly asked questions about the Housing Affordability Breakthrough Challenge. Register for our February 2 webinar to learn more.

Q: How is “affordable housing” defined in the challenge?

We will consider proposals whose innovation serves a majority (greater than 51%) of residents at these income levels:

  • Rental: 80% AMI or below
  • Homeownership: 120% AMI or below 
Q: Who is reviewing the applications?

A team comprised of leaders from Enterprise will review and score Round 1 applications, and leaders from Wells Fargo will review and score Round 2 applications. Round 3 will feature a pitch competition judged by a panel of national housing and community development experts, including Enterprise and Wells Fargo leaders.

Q: What is the Housing Affordability Breakthrough Challenge?

The challenge is a grant competition designed to identify, accelerate, and scale implementation-ready breakthrough ideas that promise new ways to create housing affordability across three focus areas: Construction, Financing, and Access and Resident Support. Administered by Enterprise Community Partners, the challenge is made possible with the generous financial support of Wells Fargo.

Q: What are the eligibility requirements of applicants?

Many entities are eligible to apply, including nonprofits, Tribal organizations, and mission-driven for-profit entities. Ideas must be implemented in at least one of 38 markets where Wells Fargo and Enterprise can provide additional infrastructure to support implementation and help scale the winning innovations. While each innovation may initially be implemented in a specific jurisdiction or geography, the expectation is that the innovation demonstrates broad applicability and has the potential to replicate in other communities across the United States. See www.enterprisecommunity.org/breakthrough for more information on eligibility.

Q: What is the application process?

The competitive application process launches January 31, 2023, with a first-round Request for Proposals (RFP). Round 1 applications are due March 3, 2023. Select applicants will be invited to join the second- and third-round RFPs. Round 3 applicants will participate in a pitch event where a panel of judges, including leaders from Enterprise, Wells Fargo, and nationally recognized housing and community development experts will determine the winners of the 2023 Housing Affordability Breakthrough Challenge.

Q: Can my proposal cover more than one focus area?

Applicants will select the focus area that best aligns with the signature feature of their innovation. We recognize that innovations may be applicable under multiple focus areas; however, the same application cannot be submitted in multiple focus areas.

Q: Can I apply to fill my project’s funding gap?

No, the challenge will not make awards to individual deals, transactions, or properties. We are looking for ideas with a plan for greater scale beyond the individual project level.

Q: Will my application be penalized if my innovation does not have an environmental component?

No, if environmental sustainability is not applicable to your particular innovation, a response of N/A will not negatively impact your overall score.

Q: Will we receive feedback on our application?

No, due to the large number of applications we expect to be submitted, we will not provide specific feedback to organizations whose innovations are not selected to advance to the next round.