St. Louis Builds Credit (STLBC) is a citywide alliance that seeks to use credit building as a lever to open doors for St. Louisans to achieve a prime credit score, build savings, and promote financial wellness. We believe that credit building can be a tool for tackling income inequality and decreasing the racial wealth gap. Our vision is that credit can be a force to bring about financial justice and economic dignity for every St. Louisan.
STLBC aims to reduce the racial credit score gap in St. Louis City by at least 15% every 5 years,
eliminating the gap by 2050.
As a leader of the St. Louis Builds Credit Alliance, we are building a network of community partners that can connect clients to any financial product or service they need to succeed in their financial goals at any stage in life.
How You Can Partner With Us
We partner with organizations to provide personal finance classes and credit fairs to their clients, customers, and/or employees. Our classes provide general financial knowledge to help folks foster a strong financial foundation, build savings, and reach their financial goals.
During our credit fairs, we provide short, one-time, in-person appointments where folks can receive a copy of their credit report and FICO score, as well as personalized action steps for improving their credit. Here are some examples of how we’ve partnered with organizations
SJHI partnered with us to develop personal finance curricula with a focus on buying and owning a home. During this 5-week class series called Homeowner Readiness Academy, participants cover the following topics:
- Creating Your Spending Plan, with a focus on building in new savings categories for home maintenance and repairs
- Understanding Credit, where folks will learn how their credit impacts the home buying process plus access their own credit reports
- Using Credit Cards Wisely, with a focus on maximizing credit cards to build credit but avoid impulse spending
- Home Buying Basics, where folks learn about down payment assistance programs and what it takes to get approved for a loan (facilitated by our mortgage lending partners)
- Protecting Your Investment, focusing on home maintenance and being a good neighbor (a SJHI class)
Upon completion of all 5 classes, participants are entered into a drawing for a Lowes gift card to help pay for improvements to their new home. Class series are offered 4 times a year, with 2 of the cohorts in Spanish. Many of the participants go on to purchase rehabbed homes in the Dutchtown and Carondelet neighborhoods in South St. Louis.
First Bank partnered with us to host personal finance classes at their new branch in the Tabernacle Community Development Corporation’s HUB in North St. Louis to provide financial education and get folks banked. During this 4-week series, participants cover the following topics:
- Creating Your Spending Plan
- Understanding Credit
- Using Credit Cards Wisely
In the final week, we provide a credit fair, where participants have the opportunity to obtain a copy of their credit report and FICO score, along with an action plan with personalized tips on how to build their credit. Participants who complete all four weeks receive $100 in their new First Bank account. We plan to provide these class series in partnership 4 times a year.
Our Alliance Members
St. Louis Builds Credit is possible thanks to these magnificent partners: