About Urban Homeworks

Our Mission:

The mission of Urban Homeworks is to lead the fight for housing justice so that all people have a safe, stable, and dignified place to live.

Our Vision:

Housing justice for all. 

Our Values:

Love. Antiracism. Grit.

Our Programs:

Homeownership In Reach

Urban Homeworks is working to close the racial gap in homeownership by developing high-quality, energy-efficient rehabilitations and new constructions in Minneapolis to be sold at affordable rates to low- and middle-income, first-time buyers.

Our goal with affordable homeownership development is to transfer community ownership to BIPOC community members who have been left out of homeownership for far too long. We work to ensure sale prices and down payment assistance are accessible for various household sizes and incomes. We also build strong relationships with Urban Homeworks residents who want to pursue homeownership and provide resources and support to make their dream a reality through our Equity and Engagement program. 

"I dreamed of it, but it wasn't a dream that I ever thought would really happen, especially as a single woman. Buying a house as a Black person is truly something to celebrate because of the history of inequity and racism in this country."

"Having stable housing means everything. You really can’t move around in life without it. It’s your pillar, it’s your stabilization, it’s where you can feel safe, where you can raise your children."

Dignified, Affordable Rentals

Urban Homeworks owns 134 affordable rental units that are home to roughly 360 individuals predominantly at or below 50-60% of the area median income (AMI) in Minneapolis.

Our aim is dignified housing—housing that is affordable, high-quality, and includes a supportive network of resources from local community partners and a responsive property manager. A stable rental home is one of many tools that can reach a much grander vision of repairing generations of discrimination, divestment, and extraction in our communities.

Equity and Engagement

At Urban Homeworks, we believe a dignified, stable home is the foundation from which equitable communities are built. Recognizing that community power lies within the people living in our homes, we center the voices of our residents with every decision we make and every project we pursue.

Our goal is to co-create communities where trust among neighbors is high, connections are strong, and historically silenced voices are amplified and heard to transform their neighborhoods. The three strategies we employ are: 

residents smile for a photo together at a POD meeting

People-Oriented Development

Our People Oriented Development (POD) model builds important relationships between neighbors, businesses, and contractors to create sustainable, people-based solutions. Through monthly POD meetings, healing circles, and seasonal community events, we create a platform for residents to gather, connect, and build relationships with each other and with UHW staff.

two photos of UHW homebuyers at closing

Homeownership Pathways

UHW’s Homeownership Pathways program was born out of the strength of our POD relationships—many of our longtime residents shared that they felt stable enough to go after their next dream of becoming a homeowner. Through partnerships, UHW provides homeownership readiness courses to help walk residents through the process of purchasing a house, as well as resources to eliminate the barriers that get in the way of homeownership.

Read more about our Homeownership Access Fund. 

two residents and EE Director Temi after all testifying to state representatives

Civic Engagement

UHW believes that civic engagement includes meeting your neighbors, getting involved in your child’s school, attending neighborhood gatherings, volunteering, voting, and so much more. We empower residents to step into leadership roles, share their insights, and collectively create solutions. We broadcast those solutions through Housing Justice Forums and create spaces where our residents have the floor to speak truth to elected officials. Individual ideas, concerns, and solutions are joined into the building blocks of community efforts to bring greater justice and equity to our neighborhoods.