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California
Home » Local Work » California : Introduction
 
 

 

Opportunity combined with the near-perfect weather makes California a great place to live. Unless you’re poor. A swelling population, booming real estate market and soaring energy costs have forced many low-income Californians into illegal, unsafe living spaces, even without running water or proper ventilation. And it will only get worse. With every new year, nearly 19,000 additional families will need housing.

We are grateful to the many partners that support our work in California .
Donate now through Network for Good or learn about other ways to become involved with Enterprise.

 

 

Edward Norton and Andrews family

Actor and Enterprise Trustee Edward Norton and the Andrews family of Los Angeles celebrate the BP Solar Neighbors program as the family receives a free solar home system. Each time a celebrity purchases a BP solar home system, the company installs a free system on the roof of one of Enterprise’s affordable homes in South Los Angeles. The system eliminates most or all of the family’s electricity costs. Photo: Courtesy BP Solar

Accomplishments
We’ve invested $347 million in California, working with a network of community-based organizations and entrepreneurs. Since 1996, we’ve:

  • Provided housing to 20,000 people, including 6,600 children.
  • Developed 4,800 decent, affordable apartments.
  • Created 2,200 homeownership opportunities for low- and moderate-income families in an area where homeownership rates are almost half of the national average.
  • Provided solar panels to 27 low-income families though BP Solar Neighbors, saving the families $1,000 each year in utility costs.

We build supportive housing for seniors, the mentally ill, and people living with HIV/AIDS, as well as rehabilitate and renovate abandoned and dilapidated buildings. We provide services including lending, investing, asset management, grants, training and technical assistance, as well as a local Green Communities Initiative. Information on our homeownership opportunities can be found on the Enterprise Home Ownership Program website.

Success Story
A Home of Their Own
Mr. Muhammad’s journey began with the realization that he could not find affordable rental housing in Los Angeles. He explains that finally, “In my frustration and despair, God sent me an angel in a homeowner who had a no-bedroom back guesthouse she would rent to me for $600 per month.” After a year, he married, and within the next year, their first son, Yahhson Emmanuel, was born. While the rent increased, the space seemed to shrink. So began Muhammad’s long road to homeownership. In 2000, he took a homebuyers education class and heard for the first time about FICA scores, and what it would take to improve his credit. “We left the place with our heads down but determined to keep going toward homeownership,” he says. He fixed his credit, paid off past bills and all the while continued to research possible homes. He went from organization to organization and eventually found himself looking in every empty house, climbing fences to peer into windows looking for the right opportunity. At last, in 2002, he qualified for a $150,000 loan at a high interest rate. But there was just no home in LA for that price. Then he learned about the Enterprise Home Ownership Program. “It gave me hope again,” Muhammad explains. “It was everything that we wanted. It solved our problem by offering the soft second mortgage.” They downloaded the list of available houses from Enterprise’s website and looked at every house on the list. In April 2003, they found their dream house, with 1,900 sq. feet, four bedrooms, three full baths and plenty of windows and closets.

“The journey did not end for us in just moving into the house. We have begun developing the Century Palms Neighborhood Association. We started cleaning the streets and sidewalks in our community and are taking charge of the war on graffiti. We are connecting with the local churches to get them to provide meeting space and showing community responsibility in terms of parking and cleaning the community. We are inviting the LAPD into our community to keep crime and violence down. This is what I call community development. I hope you agree and continue to support efforts like the Enterprise Home Owners Partnership Program.”
Omar A. Muhammad

Local Collaborations
Enterprise Home Ownership Partners (EHOP) was created in 1997. This groundbreaking partnership between Enterprise, the City of Los Angeles and HUD is creating hundreds of affordable for-sale homes for low-income buyers. The investment in neighborhoods such as South Central helps stabilize struggling communities while providing employment training and opportunities for small minority companies.

Los Angeles Profile (PDF, 315 KB, June 2007)

Contacts

Enterprise Community Partners
315 West 9th Street, Suite 801
Los Angeles, CA 90015

Jeffrey Schaffer
Southern California Director
Phone 213.833.7988
Fax 213.833.7989
Email Jeffrey

Enterprise Community Investment
100 Bush Street
Suite 600
San Francisco, CA  94104

Richard Gross
Vice President, Northern California
Phone 415.395.9466
Fax 415.395.9453
Email Richard

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© 2008, Enterprise Community Partners, Inc.
Enterprise Community Partners provides financing for affordable housing and community development through its subsidiary, Enterprise Community Investment, Inc. and its supporting organization, Enterprise Community Loan Fund.
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