Strategies: Racial Wealth Building

Evidence-informed strategies to close the racial wealth divide. These solutions account for historical practices that established and maintain the wealth divide– and reduce wealth inequities by increasing income and assets, expanding employment opportunities, removing barriers to quality education, and increasing access to homeownership. 

43 Strategies

College access programs

Help high school students prepare for college, complete applications, and enroll, especially first-generation applicants and students from families with low incomes

Evidence Rating:
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Individual Development Accounts (IDAs)

Support subsidized asset accumulation programs in which deposits by participants with low and moderate incomes are matched by program sponsors; withdrawals must be used for qualified expenses to retain matching funds

Evidence Rating:
Some Evidence
  • Income

Zoning regulation and land use policy reforms

Reform zoning regulations to remove exclusionary zoning codes, address physical environment aesthetics and safety, street continuity and connectivity, residential density, and mixed-use development, etc.

Evidence Rating:
Scientifically Supported
  • Housing and Transit
  • Diet and Exercise

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

Provide funds to households with low incomes to meet home energy needs, especially for households with children, older adults, or individuals with disabilities

Evidence Rating:
Expert Opinion
  • Housing and Transit

Inclusionary zoning & housing policies

Require developers to reserve a proportion of housing units for residents with low incomes via mandatory requirements or incentives, such as density bonuses

Evidence Rating:
Some Evidence
  • Housing and Transit

Housing rehabilitation loan & grant programs

Provide funding, primarily to families with low or middle incomes, to repair, improve, or modernize dwellings and remove health or safety hazards

Evidence Rating:
Scientifically Supported
  • Housing and Transit

Land banking

Acquire, hold, manage, and develop properties such as vacant lots, abandoned buildings, or foreclosures, and transition them to productive uses, often affordable housing developments

Evidence Rating:
Some Evidence
  • Housing and Transit
  • Diet and Exercise

Tax increment financing (TIF) for affordable housing

Create designated tax districts that generate revenue to invest in affordable housing initiatives, blight remediation, and economic development efforts

Evidence Rating:
Expert Opinion
  • Housing and Transit

Community land trusts

Purchase the land a home is on to lease to homeowners with low and middle incomes and require homeowners to sell the home back to the trust or to another resident with low income upon moving

Evidence Rating:
Some Evidence
  • Housing and Transit

Community Development Block Grants (CDBGs)

Provide funding for local community development activities such as affordable housing, anti-poverty programs, and infrastructure development

Evidence Rating:
Some Evidence
  • Housing and Transit