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Community Land Trust

SquareOne Villages has adopted a Community Land Trust (CLT) model. In a CLT, a nonprofit retains ownership of the land and provides a long-term ground lease to the owners of the housing on the land. The goal is to guarantee long-term affordability of the housing, outside of the influence of market pressures.

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Mission of the SquareOne Community Land Trust


To acquire and hold land in trust in order to provide for permanently affordable housing for households with low-incomes with the objective of forever removing the land from the speculative market. Homes shall be built and lands shall be used in an environmentally sensitive and socially responsible manner.

SquareOne CLT Portfolio

The SquareOne Land Trust currently inclues a total of 10 acres of land across 6 sites. One this land we have 41 units of permanently affordable, co-operatively owned housing, with plans to add 124 units to this land in the coming years.

How is Affordability Protected?

SquareOne Villages has adopted model bylaws from the CLT Technical  Manual that restrict the sale of land and provide long-term affordability controls within our ground leases. We are also in the process of adding 1/3 represenation from residents that live in housing on our land to our Board of Directors, which is a common practice of a CLT.

Help us Grow the SquareOne CLT

Of the the three most recent sites we've acquired, two were donated and one was offered at a below-market price. Given current conditions in our financialized housing market, this is critical to being able to develop or acquire housing that can be offered at affordable rates.

If you or someone you know may be interested in donating land to the SquareOne Land Trust, please contact our Community Relations Director, Amanda Dellinger.

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Cooperative Land Trust Housing

The cooperative land trust housing model developed by SquareOne Villages, which we call the Village Model, combines a housing co-op with a community land trust. In this hybrid ownership structure, SquareOne retains ownership of the underlying  land, while the members of the co-op own and manage the housing and improvements  on the land.  

The result is a pathway to sustainable resident-owned housing for households with low-incomes. It  includes strong affordability controls to ensure that the housing stock remains permanently  affordable for future generations to come. This multi-layered ownership structure has proven to be a  stable, low-risk financial investment for both the lender and the low-income homeowners, when  compared to conventional homeownership.  

A long-term ground lease ties the interests of both parties together, creating a partnership that helps  to ensure the longer-term viability of the co-op. SquareOne is able to serve in an advisory role,  providing support to the co-op in the form of technical assistance and training. And due to its sustained involvement in the project, SquareOne also serves as a  “mission steward” during periods of leadership change and member turnover within the co-op. 

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