Health Insurers Invest Billions in Affordable Housing Projects

Health care organizations across the country have poured billions into housing investments in recent years: In the past month, Kaiser Permanente and UnitedHealth Group both announced investments of over $100 million in affordable housing projects. Several health plans tell AIS Health that while they do expect a modest return on investment or reduction in costs from their efforts, they mostly see these expenditures as an act of altruism in line with their missions as stewards of public health.

According to the organizations themselves, total capital allocations to affordable housing investments by Kaiser Permanente, UnitedHealth Group and CVS Health Corp. amount to approximately $1.65 billion combined. A large portion of those funds are allocated to finance investments in affordable housing through the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), a financial instrument rolled out by the federal government in the late 1980s and early 1990s to encourage investment by the private sector in affordable housing.

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Peter Johnson

Peter Johnson

Peter has worked as a journalist since 2011 and has covered health care since 2020. At AIS Health, Peter covers trends in finance, business and policy that affect the health insurance and pharma sectors. For Health Plan Weekly, he covers all aspects of the U.S. health insurance sector, including employer-sponsored insurance, Medicaid managed care, Medicare Advantage and the Affordable Care Act individual marketplaces. In Radar on Drug Benefits, Peter covers the operations of (and conflicts between) pharmacy benefit managers and pharmaceutical manufacturers, with a particular focus on pricing dynamics and market access. Before joining AIS Health, Peter covered transportation, public safety and local government for various outlets in Seattle, his hometown and current place of residence. He graduated with a B.A. from Colby College.

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