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February 15, 2019

A Mission that Matters: Small Balance Loans

The strength of our mission is what brought Meg McElgunn back to Freddie Mac. McElgunn, who initially joined Freddie Mac Multifamily in 2008, spent almost four years as a Senior Producer, before an opportunity took her back to her roots in Wisconsin. After years of gaining experience as a principal for a small commercial real estate finance firm, Meg returned to Freddie Mac late last year as Small Balance Loans (SBL) Production & Sales Senior Director of the Central and Western regions. This time, her decision wasn't about her roots, it was an opportunity for her to branch out and see her skills and experience bear fruit for the multifamily market.

"I did some soul searching," said McElgunn, of her decision to return to Freddie Mac. "I had gotten to a point in my career where I wanted to use my skills to give back. I reached out to a former colleague at Freddie Mac and was excited to learn about the SBL team. The innovative work, mission, and strong team in place fit everything that I was looking for in this stage of my career. I couldn't be happier with my decision."

Freddie Mac's SBL program launched in 2014, with a focus on loan amounts ranging from $1 million to $7.5 million; targeting properties with 5 to 50 units. Much of this housing stock is affordable to low and very low-income households. In the four years since its inception, the program has grown significantly. In 2018 alone, Multifamily provided $7.4 billion in funding for 2,771 loans; this included funding for 34,273 low-income and 32,394 very low-income units.

"Multifamily feels like a much bigger piece of Freddie Mac than it did 10 years ago," said McElgunn. "It's a changing and increasingly competitive landscape out there, but affordability has never been more important. In SBL, we are always trying to think about ways to be as productive and efficient as possible, because our work heavily supports the mission for affordable housing and liquidity in the marketplace."

Thirty-one percent of U.S. renter households live in small properties that comprise five to 50 units. Freddie Mac Multifamily's SBL program provides vital funding to making sure that renters have access to adequate, affordable apartment homes. Around 90 percent of the apartments financed by Freddie Mac Multifamily each year are affordable to low- or moderate-income renters. It's that mission – and the people that do it every day – that made Freddie Mac McElgunn's new career destination.

"I didn't realize just how much the relationships I built meant to me. Knowing my coworkers were still here, thriving, is why I came back. Their successes and career growth over the years has been phenomenal. Even more than that, the mission we serve – to provide affordable housing to those in need – is something that truly inspires me."

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