Ecological Revolving Loan Fund
WHAT IT IS
CRSP’s Ecological Revolving Loan Fund (ELF) is a small community loan fund used specifically for acquiring and ecologically retrofitting property in the two block L.A. Eco-Village neighborhood and/or making loans to small green cooperatively oriented businesses started by LAEV members and/or associated CRSP businesses. It is a socially responsible investment (SRI) opportunity that has borrowed and paid back over a million dollars in the past 15 years.
WHY LOAN TO THE ELF
Many people are unhappy with their mainstream banks, and with other conventional investment opportunities of stocks, bonds and whatnot. ELF interest rates are higher than conventional interest rates on cash such as money market accounts, savings and certificates of deposit. Conventional loans, also, are used for who knows what and who knows where, doing damage to who knows who and what and where. ELF lenders know where their money is. They have an open invitation to visit LAEV and see what their money is doing: building a stronger, more sustainable and resilient demonstration neighborhood that has been influencing other sustainable community initiatives locally and worldwide for more than 20 years.
HOW IT WORKS
Individuals or organizations who are already in relationship with CRSP, the Beverly-Vermont Community Land Trust (BVCLT) or Urban Soil/Tierra Urbana (USTU) explore the ELF guidelines noted below. ELF accepts loans starting at $2,500. Current interest rates on loans is 1.5% simple and paid out quarterly or annually. Lenders to ELF determine the amount they feel comfortable lending and the term of their loan. We encourage potential lenders to talk with other lenders before making a decision to loan. You can designate what project you would like your loan applied to. Loans are paid back from mortgages CRSP currently holds on LAEV properties, other loans coming in, and limited equity sale of LAEV properties.
CURRENT OPPORTUNITIES YOUR LOAN COULD APPLY TO
- Solar hot water system
- Solar photovoltaic electric installations
- Street plaza project
- White House Place Learning Garden
- Building reserves
- On-going eco-retrofitting of the three buildings under LAEV Development organizations’ control (USTU, CRSP, BVCLT)
- Small green cooperative oriented businesses in LAEV
ELF GUIDELINES FOR LENDERS
- Term of Loan*
ELF Loans are for 18 months, 3 years, 5 years or 10 years.
You select your own term!
- Interest Rates*
Current rate (2015) is 1.5%. Interest on loans under $5,000 may be paid annually while interest on loans over $5,000 is paid quarterly (every three months). Principal is paid at the end of the loan period.
Interest rates may be re-negotiated at the expiration of an initial loan.
- Loan Amounts*
Loan amounts start at $2,500. Past loans have ranged from $2,500 to $100,000.
You select the amount that suits you!
- Use of Loan Monies*
Your loan will be used for eco-retrofitting of existing community owned properties within L.A. Eco-Village, acquisition of new properties, new green business development to provide livelihood opportunities for people who live in LAEV , and to pay back other ELF lenders. Examples of small green businesses that have been incubated in LAEV or are currently incubating include the Bicycle Kitchen, Cafecito Organico, the Food Lobby co-op, the LAEV Art Studio, Relampago, the LAEV Sewing Studio, the LAEV Arts & Crafts store, and the Arroyo Seco Network of Time Banks.
- Loan Security and Payback Sources*
Loans are made to CRSP (ELF) and are not generally recorded as liens against any property CRSP now owns or might purchase. Loans are secured by a loan agreement. Loans are paid back from mortgages CRSP holds, new loans coming into the ELF, or some combination of the above. Contact CRSP for details.
- Talk with Others Who Have Loaned*
You are encouraged to talk with other lenders to the ELF, and ask them about their process in making the decision to loan. Contact Lois (213/738-1254) for a phone list or email addresses and phone numbers of other lenders.
- Loan Agreement*
Call or write CRSP for a sample loan document, 213/738-1254. Feel free to revise it as it suits your needs.
- Where to Send Checks*
Checks should be made out to CRSP/ELF and sent to: 117 Bimini Place #221, Los Angeles, CA 90004. Electronic transfers can also be arranged.
DONATION POSSIBILITIES: And remember, if you’d rather make a tax deductible contribution, the family of LAEV development organizations–CRSP, the Beverly-Vermont Community Land Trust and the Urban Soil-Tierra Urbana Housing Co-op–are all 501.c.3 tax exempt corporations. Consult your accountant or tax attorney to determine what could be a major tax savings when you donate cash, stocks, bonds or property to a 501.c.3 corporation.