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The Way Home (formerly Mortgages for Mothers)

Dollar Bank, FSB (Winner) - Pittsburgh, PA

2023 Community Committment Awards Submission

  • Entry Category: Affordable Housing
  • Asset Size: Medium

Dollar Bank began its history over 168 years ago (July 1855) recognizing the need for a mutual bank to serve the interests of the working class, a place where individuals could safely deposit their money and have it invested prudently on their behalf. Thus, Dollar Bank was founded as a bank open to everyone. All ethnicities, occupations, nationalities, etc.

Dollar Bank's 1855 charter acknowledged married women as the sole legal owners of their savings accounts. Single women retained exclusive ownership of their savings accounts at Dollar Bank even after they got married. For as little as $1, an individual or couple could open a Savings account at Dollar Bank. Dollar Bank's first mortgage to a woman was February 1857, Rose Irwin. Its first mortgage to an African American was in February 1860, to John Woodson (a barber).

Fast forward to 1997. Dollar Bank began "Mortgages for Mothers" (the program). This program has been operating for over 26 years and continues to offer the dream of first-time homeownership to individuals desiring their first home. The program has the unique wraparound components of FREE one-on-one credit counseling, a grant for down payment and closing costs assistance to qualified borrowers under 80% AMI, and an in house mortgage product "Rent No More" offered by Dollar Bank as a shelf loan that has no credit score requirement for approval, rather is based on DTI ratio. In 2022, Dollar Bank rebranded the program name to "The Way Home" to better reflect the low and moderate diverse demographic of young borrowers, single mothers, heads of households, men, etc. The program continues to be stellar as more and more individuals break the cycle of renting and become homeowners in all the markets.