Thurston Housing Land Trust is a tax exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit. We are a democratic, community-based housing land trust operating in Thurston County, Washington. Our mission is to create affordable housing for low and moderate income people as a means for building equity and pathways to ownership.
The trust will seek public and/or private funding; grants, financing and donations, including lands or properties. The scope of activities is open to socially valuable uses other than housing.
The Trust is committed to multiple levels of democratically inclusive governance across organization or property, where appropriate, that balances needs of members, residents, and donors.
The Importance of Membership in a Community Land Trust
The most important part of Thurston Housing Land Trust structure is that community members can have decision making involvement at annual meetings. leadership roles on the board and or attend Board meetings to have input throughout the year. A fundamental principle of CLTs is that homeowner-lessees have a strong voice and can participate as board members as well.
A healthy membership roster speaks volumes. Even if you do not have time to participate, becoming a member is a message to our funders and other housing advocates that Thurston Housing Land Trust is a valued resource for our community.
Research conducted on community land trusts has validated several benefits to communities fortunate to have one:
equity and wealth building for homeowner-lessee members in marginalized, and communities of color
stabilized trust homeownership increases educational success for children in those households
less that 3% mortgage failures with trust homes compared to 18% in the wider population due to supportive management and foreclosure prevention efforts by the trust
trust holding land and homes acts as neighborhood stabilizing and preservation factor
homeownership in a CLT often means cost burdened families pay less for purchasing a home than they have paid in rent for comparable housing.
Land trusts have become known for conserving vital green belts, rivers and farmland in our area. What is not as widely known is that some of the oldest trusts around the US are for preserving affordable housing.