Collective Real Estate Ownership (CREO)

Application Closed

The goal of the Collective Real Estate Ownership (CREO) funding opportunity is to facilitate the purchase and shared ownership of commercial real estate by historically underserved, minority-led nonprofits and small businesses by providing down payment and closing cost assistance.

Scroll to the bottom of this page to access the application link.

What can I apply for?
  • Fully forgivable loan up to $500,000.
  • Funds cover up to 20% down payment and closing costs* to purchase collectively-owned commercial real estate. Click here for additional funding details.
  • If awarded, loan is forgiven over a 5-year period, provided conditions are met, such as not reselling the property and maintaining shared ownership.

*Applicants pay for costs  prior to closing out of pocket, such as appraisal, inspection, environmental, and mortgage application fees.

Am I eligible?
To apply, you must be:

  • A collaborative of 2 or more small businesses and/or nonprofits.
  • Owned or led by person(s) who is one or more of the following:
    • Black
    • Disabled
    • Hispanic/Latino
    • LGBTQ+
    • Middle Eastern/North African*
    • Military veteran
    • Native or Indigenous*
    • Refugee*
    • * New for 2024
  • In operation for at least 2 years.
  • Based in and serving Miami-Dade County.
  • Interested in a property located in one of these communities.
What do I need to apply?
  • Complete an application to describe your collaborative, your plans for the property, and plans to acquire financing.
  • Strong applications have:
    • agreed upon the business terms of the collaborative, such as % equity share ownership.
    • identified 1-2 subject properties.
    • have relationships with a real estate agent, mortgage lender, and attorney. 

Below are the required attachments: 

    • Project Documentation
    • Organizational Documentation
      • Resume for lead of all owner organizations
      • Business or strategic plan for lead organization
      • Draft operating agreement describing business terms
    • Financial Documentation**
      • Two years of tax statements for all owners
        • Form 990 (nonprofit) or business tax return
      • Annual operating budget for all owners
        • Ensure it includes both income & expenses
      • Income or profit & loss statement for all owners
      • Pro forma financials for the collaborative
        • Including all projected monthly income & expenses
      • Mortgage pre-qualification and purchase agreement, if available

* CREO project budget template must be used.
** Templates for financial documentation are available, but not required to be used.

What is the timeline?
  • This is the last year of funding.
  • Applications are due by either February 15 or April 15, 2024.
  • Decisions are communicated by the end of the following month:
    • Example: Apply by 2/15, notified by 3/31/2024
What if I need help with my application?
How will decisions be made?
  • Approximately 4-6 collectives are funded each year.
  • After each deadline, we review and score applications using the criteria below.
  • Proposals and scores are shared with our expert investment review committee to decide which projects will be funded.
    1. Proposal is feasible and aligns with program goals to support small businesses
    2. Owner(s) represent multiple aspects of historical disadvantage
    3. Collective ownership model is concrete and aligns with program goal of shared equity
    4. Financing plans and estimated payments are realistic and attainable
    5. Collaborative members have strong organizational and financial capacity
    6. Proposal will provide high-impact and create benefit for the community

Below is the list of priority communities for Miami Open for Business. While CREO properties must be located in one of these neighborhoods, the grant and loan are open to businesses all over Miami-Dade County. Grant and loan applicants from these areas receive extra points during scoring. * New in 2024

North Dade
Miami Gardens
Opa Locka
North Miami
North Miami Beach

Central Dade
Liberty City
Little Haiti
Little Havana*
West Coconut Grove

South Dade
Leisure City
Richmond Heights
South Miami Heights*
West Perrine

Learn more about CREO and how it could work for your business by hearing from fellow entrepreneurs.

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