Addressing Homelessness & Stabilizing Housing

Project Vitals

543 E. Chestnut Street
City of Lancaster


Chestnut Housing Corporation

Loan Amount/Total Project Cost:
$130,000 / $160,000

The Chestnut Housing Corporation (CHC),an integrated auxiliary of the East Chestnut Street Mennonite Church in Lancaster City, felt called to take action to help end homelessness and stabilize housing in their neighborhood. With that calling and $75,000, in 2010 they purchased their first property on E. Chestnut St. and rented it to a family experiencing homelessness.

Feeling that they could and should do more, CHC decided that they wanted to purchase another property. However, given its sizeable capital investment in the first property, to do so they would need to take out a loan. Having approached a traditional lender, they found that terms would have made it difficult to handle repayment and achieve the rents they needed in order to rent to low to moderate income families experiencing homelessness. They approached LHOP to become pre-qualified for a flexible, low interest loan in order to purchase their next property.

After approximately a year of looking at housing within a comfortable radius of the church, often times with LHOP staff, CHC found the perfect property…a two unit, newly-rehabbed (by Huyard Properties) building. With already being pre-qualified for a LHOP loan, they were able to place a timely offer, which was accepted.

LHOP provided a $130,000 loan to CHC for the building purchase. Working with Tabor Community Services, two families experiencing homelessness now call 543 E.Chestnut St. home. One of the families had been living in a car while looking for affordable housing.