Here at Windermere Whidbey, we are dedicated to building sustainable communities for generations to come. We realize that truly affordable homeownership opportunities are key to maintaining a stable workforce and strengthening our economy. Local supporters of affordable housing are following the lead of the neighboring San Juan Islands who have successfully created Community Land Trusts to permanently address this critical need.
Home on Whidbey (HOW) is based on a traditional Community Land Trust (CLT) model, a non-profit organization created to hold land for the benefit of a community and the individuals within.
The CLT acquires property through purchase or donation, removing the land from the speculative real estate market, and providing homes for individuals and families who would otherwise be squeezed out of the housing market due to their income level. CLT homeownership is a highly successful model across the nation, creating high quality, always affordable homes.
HOW uses a shared equity model of housing, combining community investment with income qualified homebuyers.
The Homeowner owns the home structure and pays a nominal fee to lease the land it sits on, and agrees to a resale formula that maintains affordability for future owners.
Subsequent sales of the home are based on a re-sale formula providing a fair return for the first owner while keeping the home's price accessible to future buyers.
The OPAL CLT projects, on Orcas Island, have been wildly successful in creating a positive impact on the individuals, families, and overall community.
“When I learned about the possibility of buying an OPAL house, it was like someone opened a window on the rest of my life. The insecurities were gone. My three daughters and I would have a roof over our heads and a home that I could afford. My children could grow up on the island where they belong. I would have neighbors I could count on for support. Even now it is hard to describe what OPAL offered us and what a difference it has made in our lives.” – Former OPAL Homeowner
If you would like to know more about the OPAL CLT, check out the video and links below:
Affordable housing is crucial for the wellbeing of our residents and our economy. HOW Community Land Trust is dedicated to providing permanently affordable homes and thriving communities here on Whidbey Island.
By supporting affordable housing projects, Windermere Whidbey is working towards creating a more vibrant and thriving community for all. This commitment to the community reflects our belief that everyone deserves access to safe and affordable housing, regardless of their income level. We invite you to join us as Members of HOW CLT.