BOSTON BUILDS CREDIT
Boston Builds Credit (BBC) is a citywide credit building initiative that seeks to empower Bostonians to build prime credit scores in order to increase their financial stability, build assets, and create wealth. When done citywide, we believe that credit building can be a powerful tool for addressing income inequality and the racial wealth gap. We envision a Boston where no one is held back from pursuing their goals because of credit.
BBC was created by the United Way, City of Boston, and LISC Boston. Working with our network of community partners, we provide Bostonians with increased access to the tools they need to build a prime credit score, including free credit building workshops, free financial coaching, and safe credit building products. We also work with funders, financial institutions, credit bureaus, and other leaders in the industry to advocate for consumer-focused systems change. Most of all, we're on a mission to make credit work for everyone.
Join us as we work to empower 25,000 Bostonians achieve a prime credit score by 2025!
Click on the links below to learn more:
The Boston Context:
Over 200,000 Boston residents have limited or no credit history, or a poor credit score. The cost and instability that come with these worsen issues of income inequality and perpetuate the racial wealth gap. In Boston, this gap is particularly alarming - white families have an average net worth of $247,000 while African American families have an average net worth of $8. Moreover, residents of neighborhoods with high percentages of persons of color are more likely to have subprime credit scores and debts in collection than residents of majority-white ones.
Though this structural inequity has many causes, credit building and the associated access, savings, and stability that good credit provides, can and must be a part of the solution.
To strengthen the city's credit building ecosystem, BBC works with our 25+ community and employer partners to connect residents to credit building workshops, credit counseling sessions, and one-on-one financial coaching. We also provide practitioners with ongoing training and support through the United Way's Financial Empowerment Learning Institute and communities of practice for financial coaches, career coaches, and organizations interested in credit building generally.
On the systems change side, BBC works with partners such as the credit bureaus, financial institutions, funders, and policymakers to ensure continued investment in quality credit building programs, safe financial products, and consumer protections.
Key strategies include:
Small Business Coaching
Rent Reporting & Alternative Data
Public Information Campaign
Safe Credit Building Products