Eligibility and Procedures


The College Housing Program (the “Program”) was established with the main goal of enhancing Lewis & Clark’s scholarly community, to encourage faculty and staff to reside near campus and to strengthen its recruitment and retention efforts. Under the Program, housing improvements (houses) are sold to eligible faculty and staff, while the College retains ownership of the underlying land through a Ground Lease Agreement with the buyer. This financing structure allows eligible employees to purchase housing at reduced cost while allowing both the employee and the College to participate in the appreciation of the value of the property. During and after the mortgage crisis in the late 2000s, employees were not able to find lending institutions willing to finance mortgages under the unique terms of the program. In response, the College was approved to provide mortgage loans directly to employees participating in the program. In 2022, the program financing terms were further clarified and updated under the guidelines detailed in Board Resolution No. 11 (2022-2023) College Housing Program Financial Terms.


Faculty members with tenure or tenure track appointments and members of the administrative staff with at least 0.75 FTE are eligible to participate in the Program.


  1. Properties will be advertised to the Lewis & Clark community as they become available or may be offered as part of a recruitment or retention package when doing so best serves the Program’s goals.
  2. All sale, repurchase and refinance transactions within the Program shall be executed at the appraised value of the improvements (separate from land value), as determined by an independent certified appraiser. The appraisal shall be made within a minimum of three months of the transaction date.
  3. Mortgage financing on improvements within the Program is limited to the financing offered by the College.
  4. Eligible faculty and staff shall complete an Interested Party Form and include a statement identifying how living close to campus will facilitate their future contributions to the co-curricular life of the College.
  5. When more than one eligible employee wishes to acquire the same home, priority will generally be determined by the ranking outlined below, although the College retains the discretion to diverge from this ranking based on a prospective participant’s co-curricular contribution commitment or other factors that best serve the Program’s goals:
    1. Tenured or tenure track faculty not currently owning a home.
    2. Administrative staff working in student services not currently owning a home.
    3. Tenured or tenure track faculty currently owning a home elsewhere*.
    4. Administrative staff working in student services currently owning a home elsewhere*.
    5. Tenured or tenure track faculty.
    6. Administrative staff. 

*Note: In the event that an employee makes an offer with a contingency, the College will continue to offer the property to others on the list. If a non-contingent offer is made, that is acceptable to the College, the employee with the contingent offer will be given one week to remove the contingency or the College will proceed with the non-contingent offer.

F. Any employee needing financing to participate in the Program will be required to provide a loan application signed by all borrowers, authorization for a credit check of all borrowers, and all additional documents required by the mortgage qualification process.

G. The College may offer a mortgage to qualified borrowers in the Program, in an amount up to 90% of the improvement value, with a fully amortizing structure not to exceed a maximum term of 30 years.

H. The College will retain the title to the land and sell the improvements with a triple net ground lease to eligible faculty and staff. In return for its capital investment and the ground lease, the College will:

  1. Benefit from any market value gains on the land associated with the property.
  2. Retain the right to repurchase the improvement under the terms and conditions defined in the ground lease

I. Upon purchasing an improvement from the College that is covered by the Program, the owner shall maintain all perils insurance against damages or losses, with a lender’s loss payable clause in favor of Lewis & Clark College. Title transfer shall be by special warranty deed, which shall contain the restrictions on resale and all other restrictive covenants required by the Program.

J. To protect the College’s investment and to preserve the resale value of the properties covered by the Program, modifications to properties are subject to design review and approval by the College.

K. The College shall have the right to pay delinquent real estate taxes, make property repairs, advance property insurance premiums, and take other actions that the College deems necessary to protect its investment, and to recover any such costs and advances from the employee.

L. Properties acquired or financed under the Program will be subject to repurchase by the College under any circumstance described in the Ground Lease Agreement.

M. Employees participating in the Program with an existing mortgage note in good standing are eligible to refinance the mortgage note through the Program, subject to the following provisions.

  1. The loan-to-value ratio for a refinanced mortgage shall not exceed 90% of the appraised value of the improvement. The loan-to-value ratio for cash-out refinance transactions shall not exceed 80% of the appraised value of the improvement. Loan values exceeding the original loan amount will be offered only at the College’s discretion.
  2. The loan term shall not exceed 30 years and the loan shall be structured as fully amortizing. Loan terms extending beyond the original end date will be offered only at the College’s discretion.
  3. The Ground Lease Agreement in effect must be the version most recently approved by the College.
  4. Refinance transactions will be limited in frequency at the College’s discretion.