Boston Builds Credit

Boston Builds Credit
Here, you’ll find free and low-cost resources to help Boston and area residents understand how credit works and learn how to build, protect and improve your credit scores. With a trusted network of partners working with the City of Boston and United Way of Massachusetts Bay & Merrimack Valley, our team can put you in contact with a trained financial coach and financial wellness workshops.

National Housing & Financial Capability Survey

NeighborWorks America
On June 24, 2021, NeighborWorks America released findings from its 2021 Housing and Financial Capability Survey, which was conducted in April. The survey showed that many people see the advantages in owning a home but are unequipped to handle financial challenges that stall their dream of homeownership. Since 2019, NeighborWorks America has conducted its annual Housing and Financial Capability Survey to collect data that helps set the foundation for the stabilization of communities. Prior to 2019, the organization released a spring consumer finance survey and a fall homeownership survey. The findings from the survey help NeighborWorks America understand who still needs the organization's help and the areas that need the most attention.

Worforce Training Fund Express Program - Passive House and LEED certifications

Any company is eligible for $30,000 of training per year through this grant application. There are many certification for building sustainability measures.

Commonwealth Workforce Training Fund Express Program

Workforce Training Fund
50 courses approved to provide PHIUS Certified Passive House Consultant training.

Getting Capital to Small Businesses in Low-Income Communities

The Aspen Institute
Heeding the call for greater race and gender equity, policymakers, donors, and investors want to uplift small businesses in underserved communities. But boosting access to capital for business owners of color is easier said than done. In this video, we identify the importance of microloans in meeting firms owned by people of color where they are in terms of their capital needs. And we highlight the work of community development financial institutions (CDFIs) in serving this vital role. Members of the Aspen Institute’s Microfinance Impact Collaborative, for example, issued over 8,300 loans in 2018, 75% of which were to entrepreneurs of color.

Project Manager Core Skills Toolkit

Mel King Institute
The Tracker tool was designed to support the growth and development of non-profit real estate project managers. The tool can be adapted to suit needs of various project managers, as job titles and the division of work will differ for each organization. It can be used with a supervisor/supervisee relationship or as an individual project manager self-assessment.

Know Your Rights: Source of Income Discrimination FAQ

Attorney General, Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Massachusetts residents who rely on public assistance, including rental assistance programs, often face unique challenges in securing housing, which is a key pathway to economic security. Because we recognize the importance of access to housing, we have prepared this guide to help educate residents and landlords on their rights and obligations in this area.

State and Local Antidiscrimination Laws Could Help Renters Access Emergency Rental Assistance and Keep Their Homes

Urban Institute
Despite the needs of both renters and landlords, some landlords are not accepting rent relief. We don’t have much data on how many landlords are refusing rental relief or their motivations for doing so, but we know that the outcomes can be dire for tenants, especially low-income renters and renters of color, who often face housing discrimination when using federal assistance.

COVID Eviction Legal Help Video - Ed's Story

COVID Eviction Legal Help Project (CELHP)
Last October, the COVID Eviction Legal Help Project (CELHP) was created through the Governor’s Eviction Diversion Initiative. Since its inception, CELHP has provided legal help in over 3,650 eviction cases.

Facing an Eviction Informational Videos

COVID Eviction Legal Help Project
Learn what to do if you are facing an eviction in Massachusetts.

COVID-19 Reopening Guide for Small Businesses

Chamber of Commerce
This guide will cover all that business owners need to know about reopening and navigating current government requirements.

South End Affordable Housing Tour

Corcoran Center
South End Affordable Housing Tour with Vince O'Donnell

National Low Income Housing Profiles by State

National Low Income Housing Coalition
Our Housing Profiles provide a one-page snapshot of the information advocates need to make the case for socially just housing policy. The State Housing Profiles are perfect to take with you when meeting with a state elected official or U.S. Senator. Take the Congressional District Housing Profile for your congressional district with you when you meet with your U.S. Representative.

MA Self-Guided Eviction Tool

Greater Boston Legal Services
This completely free guided interview is for Massachusetts tenants who are being evicted. It is estimated to take between 25 and 90 minutes for a typical tenant to use on their own. It will help you make sure that you respond to your landlord's eviction case correctly.

State Support for Local School Construction: Leveraging Equity and Diversity

Lauren Mittman, Nikhil De, and Philip Tegeler
Historically, state support for suburban school construction facilitated white flight and metropolitan segregation. The least we can do today is think more carefully about the impacts of future school construction funding. PRRAC has prepared a policy brief on this question, based on a state-by-state survey of current practices.

Best Practices for RAD "Choice-Mobility" Implementation

Poverty & Race Research Action Council
The Rental Assistance Demonstration has become the most significant public housing redevelopment program in the U.S., bringing new funds to support aging properties around the country. One essential element of the program is that, after conversion, all tenants have a right to request a portable Housing Choice Voucher, and move to a community of their choice (thus opening up their apartment to another eligible family on the waiting list). Few housing authorities have worked out plans for implementation of this Choice-Mobility feature of the program, so we have developed a guidance document for PHAs and advocates, based on extensive policy research and interviews.

Delivering Credit to Entrepreneurs of Color Impacted by COVID-19: Why Community Financial Institutions Are Essential

The Aspen Institute
Prior to the global pandemic, the relatively high small business start and ownership rates among entrepreneurs of color were a bright spot in a period of declining US entrepreneurship. But small businesses have endured some of the hardest stresses of the pandemic, as forced closures and physical distancing have decimated earnings for restaurants, salons, childcare centers, and other services we all rely on. Businesses owned by entrepreneurs of color have been particularly impacted by declining revenues, and despite government efforts to get money into people’s hands, many small businesses have not received the support they need. This is partly a problem with the delivery systems used: programs that flow through banks miss those that have historically been underserved. Fortunately, there are lenders who serve these businesses and communities: Community Development Financial Institutions. CDFIs are mission-driven lenders that serve the parts of America that too often get left behind, inc

Fifty Years Of “The People v. HUD”

Poverty & Race research Action Council (PRRAC)
HUD has benefited enormously from strong civil rights advocacy, and many of HUD’s most important regulatory guidelines have emerged from this advocacy. We offer this selected timeline as a tribute to this ongoing history and, we hope, an inspiration to a new generation of civil rights and tenant activists.

COVID Community Data Lab

Boston Indicators
We’re scanning the best available data sources to analyze how our communities have changed since the onset of the COVID-19 crisis in early March. (Since public health experts are covering the dynamics of the virus spread, we focus here mostly on non-virus-related areas.) We’re looking at non-traditional sources like call volumes to the state’s 211 social service call center and road traffic through Mass Pike toll gantries. None of them are perfect, and there’s a lot of other data we wish we had. But taken together these sources paint a picture of how much our day-to-day lives have been altered across a few key domains.

Cambridge College Resource Library for Business Development Program

Cambridge College
The Business Resource Library connects Consultants, Technical Assistance Providers and students to a variety of learning tools, including sample documents and industry trend topics. This library can quickly provide comprehensive information you may need to assist small businesses during their start-up, stabilization and growth phases. These materials can be downloaded from the links below. This library was built with the collaboration of Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC), Mel King Institute, Lawyers for Civil Rights, and Technical Assistance providers.

COVID-19 Housing Policy Scorecard

Eviction Lab
Safe, stable, and decent housing has always been central to ensuring health and stability. Today, with the United States focused on containing the COVID-19 pandemic, the broader and longstanding issue of income and housing insecurity has quickly become paramount to the health of an entire nation.To better understand the steps states have taken to prevent homelessness during and after the pandemic, the Eviction Lab and Columbia Law School’s Professor Emily Benfer have developed a policy scorecard for each state, distilling the contents of thousands of newly-released emergency orders, declarations, and legislation into a clear set of critical measures included in, and left out of, state-level pandemic responses related to eviction and housing.

Opportunity360 Community Dashboard

Opportunity360 Community Dashboards provide the information necessary to determine where action is most needed and where established programs and policies have been most successful in any neighborhood in the country. These dashboards now allow data comparison for up to three census tracts, anywhere in the US. In the free Opportunity360 Community Dashboards, you will find over 150 indicators from 27 sources.

Housing Matters

Urban Institute
Housing Matters is an online resource for the most rigorous research and practical information on how a quality, stable, affordable home in a vibrant community contributes to individual and community success.

Massachusetts Small Business Loan Data Project

Massachusetts Community & Banking Council (MCBC)
The Massachusetts Community & Banking Council (the MCBC) has sponsored an annual report on small business lending trends in Massachusetts since 1998. In the Spring of 2019, MCBC launched a new online platform – the Massachusetts Small Business Loan Data Project – that serves as a companion to the most recent report, Small Business Lending in Massachusetts 2008-2017, authored by BankMaps. The Massachusetts Small Business Loan Data Project provides an online data service with interactive access to maps and charts from six (6) national databases related to the subject of small business lending in Massachusetts.


Massachusetts Housing Partnership's Center for Housing Data
The site compiles community-level information from various data sources for all 351 Massachusetts cities and towns, and visualizes that data in graphics and charts so it's easy to understand, print out and bring to a community discussion.

Homes for Families: Family Housing Resource Guide Massachusetts

Brooke Murphy, UMass Boston Master of Public Administration Graduate Student
All of the resources, terms, definitions, subsidies and programs one should know to create affordable family housing in Massachusetts.

Green + Healthy Property Management: A Guide for Multifamily Affordable Housing

Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC)
LISC created this Guide to help affordable housing owners define and pursue measures to reduce the use of energy, water, and harmful chemicals in their properties, reduce waste generated on site, create healthier living environments for residents, and reduce the carbon and environmental footprint associated with residential properties.

Equitable Development / Brownfields Planning

Groundwork USA
Groundworks USA's technical assistance team offers customized strategy, tools, and peer support for those in brownfield-affected communities seeking a more inclusive planning and redevelopment agenda in which everyone can prosper.

The National Equity Research Database, Boston Edition

Brandeis Institute for Child, Youth and Family Policy
This is a database of 286 socio-economic indicators on a wide range of subjects, including demography, education, employment, health, housing, earnings and ancestry covering the Boston metropolitan area.

Building Blocks: Connecting People, Places and Policies

Enterprise Community Partners
A podcast for thought-provoking conversations about the current issues, trends, ideas and big questions facing the affordable housing and community development field in the United States.

MASSCAP Trainings: Recorded Webinars

This resource contains all the past recorded webinars from MASSCAP (Understanding Immigrant Rights, Community Action Impact, Succession Planning, and More!)

Housing Toolbox for Mass Communities

Strategies and best practices for the creation and preservation of affordable housing, with guides, tools and resources for local boards & committees, planners, municipal staff, developers, and volunteers.

Access: A Community Development Podcast

Federal Reserve System
Access is a new podcast from the Community Development departments of the Federal Reserve System. Each episode highlights a successful model or program within the four focus areas of our work: people, place, policy and practice, and small business.

Budget Resources

Mass Budget
Shortly after each major state budget release, MassBudget produce a written Budget Monitor that analyzes major proposals across a range of key areas (e.g. education, transportation, health care, revenue).

Inclusive, Local Sourcing: Purchasing for People and Place

Democracy Collaborative
This toolkit provides hospital and health system leaders with the tools they need to harness their everyday business operations to improve community health through procurement and purchasing focused on locally-owned businesses.

The Cost of Affordable Housing: Does it Pencil Out?

Urban Institute and the National Housing Conference
This interactive online tool illustrates how charging rents affordable to low-income families makes it difficult to finance affordable housing without subsidy.

Jargon Buster- Build Healthy Places Network

Build Healthy Places Network
Tool demystifies community development and public health jargon terms for those working with peers in other sectors

Pedestrian Infrastructure: Strategies for improving pedestrian safety through low-cost traffic calming

Tool provides examples of low-cost measures to calm traffic and enhance safety on municipal streets and state roads

Shared Ownership Toolkit

Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE)
Explore case studies, videos and resources on how to create a shared ownership business enterprise

Resources from the Massachusetts Community and Banking Council

Massachusetts Community and Banking Council
Explore MCBC's compendium of resources on their new website intended for boosting the availability of credit and financial services in low-income communities