What is a Community Land Trust?
Community Land Trusts (CLTs) are non-profit organizations which are governed by a board of CLT residents, residents of the community and public representatives. They provide community assets and shared homeownership opportunities for families and communities. While CLTs develop all types of projects, the main part of their work is the creation of affordable homes. CLTs make these homes affordable by taking the cost of land out of the purchase price of the home. They remain affordable because the resale of the house is controlled by a resale formula which keeps the price of the house low.
How do Community Land Trusts Work?
When a family or individual purchases a house that is on land owned by a community land trust, they are only purchasing the house, not the land that the house sits on. This makes the house much more affordable. The homeowners then lease the land their house sits on from the CLT. The lease is long term, often a 99-year renewable lease. If and when the homeowner(s) decide to sell the home, they agree to sell it at a restricted price in order to keep the house affordable. The homeowner may realize appreciation from improvements they made on the house.
Who Controls a Community Land Trust?
Typically, a community land trust is a nonprofit that is run by a board, staff and community members. The trust takes into account the interests of its residents, the community, and the public interest to promote wealth building, retention of public resources, and solutions for community needs.