Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health Gift Helps LEAP Housing Solutions Complete $2.1 Million Capital Campaign

An artist’s rendering of Caritas Crossing, one of LEAP Housing Solutions planned communities.

The partnership will create affordable housing in Mountain Home and Boise communities

The Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health contributed $300,000 to LEAP Housing Solutions that allowed the Boise-based nonprofit that creates affordable housing to complete a $2.1 million capital campaign of the LEAP Housing Trust.

The LEAP Housing Trust creates homes with sales prices that are affordable to households who are considered low income or earn 80% of the area median income.

“The Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health is dedicated to addressing root causes to health issues,” said Kendra Witt-Doyle, Executive Director, Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health. “Housing is an important driver to health and well-being, and Idaho is at a unique moment to start addressing housing gaps. As one of the fastest growing states in the nation, we need to build housing today to help future Idahoans get and stay healthy.”

The LEAP Housing Trust has three important benefits: creating affordable homes, building equity, and remaining affordable forever. Homes are affordable since homeowners are only purchasing the home, not the land, which is owned by the Trust. All homeowners build equity on their homes, including any improvements made. Watch this video to learn about the process through the lens of a LEAP Housing Trust homebuyer [youtube.com].

If a homeowner is ready to sell, the Trust ensures that the home will be sold to another qualifying buyer, creating perpetual affordability. With skyrocketing home prices and many Idahoans being priced out of the market, the LEAP Housing Trust is an attractive solution for many.

The average sales price for homes in Boise is currently $454,000, the first homes in the Trust are priced below $300,000. Inventory in the market is nearly nonexistent in this price range and LEAP is working to fill the need for affordable homeownership opportunities for Idaho families/residents.

“The LEAP Housing Trust is a powerful wealth building tool to create scalable solutions for Idahoans to purchase homes in a housing market that has left many individuals and families behind,” said Founder and Executive Director of LEAP Housing Solutions, Bart Cochran. “With the support of our healthcare community and many other major donors who believe stable housing is healthcare, the LEAP Housing Trust is positioned to continue creating homes that will be affordable forever.”

Caritas Commons (14 homes), Whitney Commons (11 homes) and an unnamed project in Mountain Home will be the first three communities in the LEAP Housing Trust. The Foundation’s funding is targeted for the Mountain Home project. LEAP is looking to expand throughout Idaho to make homes in the Trust available across the state.

The LEAP Housing Trust was made possible by the 14 contributions of individuals, corporations and foundations who made the decision to invest in the communities in which they live and serve. LEAP continues to look for community partners who want to get involved in a solution to the housing market that is rapidly leaving Idahoans behind. Because of the nature of the LEAP Housing Trust, initial investments made by the community will continue to provide opportunities for generations of Idahoans.

The $2.1 million capital campaign was supported by the following major donors: Saint Alphonsus, Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health, Whitney Foundation, Federal Home Loan Bank, Laura Moore Cunningham Foundation, Harry Morrison Foundation, Boise Regional Realtors Foundation, First Interstate Bank, the Idaho Community Foundation and private individuals.