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Impact Hub’s

Affordability Accelerator

Affordability Accelerator Showcase Day


This cohort has worked hard, learned from one another and the community. They have strengthened their commitment and investment in addressing Austin’s affordability crisis.

On Community Showcase Day, accelerator participants will present their solutions to a room full of investors, subject matter experts, entrepreneurs and leaders from government, nonprofit and business sectors.

Sponsors Image

The Problem

Austin housing cost increases are outpacing household income at a rate of nearly 750%.  Over the last 6 years (2010-2016), Austin median family home price has increased 45.25% while median family income has only increased 5.42%.

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“The stakes could not be clearer: If we do nothing, Austin will become like San Francisco, a wonderful, if incredibly expensive city, with a median home price over $1 Million where only the wealthy and the subsidized can afford to live. We lose [and are already losing] our middle class to suburban sprawl, making traffic even worse and losing the spirit and soul of our city.”

– Mayor Steve Adler

photo by Jenn Shapland

The Opportunity

Impact Hub Austin has partnered with Google, Chase, Capital Plus Financial, BuildFax and Noble Capital to find new and innovative solutions to tackling our city’s affordability crisis.

This Fall, Impact Hub Austin will be running its second Affordability Accelerator uniting the civic, tech, and real estate industries to convene around sustainable solutions to Austin’s growing affordability crisis. But we know affordability in Austin is not defined solely by a reduction in housing costs. For the majority of Austinites, housing and transit costs are their largest monthly expenses and in our second accelerator, we are also interested in innovative ideas that address the intersection of transit and housing.

“With the current rewrite of the land development code (CodeNEXT), the brand new City of Austin strategic housing blueprint, and the recent mayoral report and recommendations on addressing Austin’s systemic racism and inequity, this is an unprecedented moment to leverage focus, knowledge and public will to make a significant impact on the affordability crisis.”

— Ashley Phillips
Managing Director of Impact Hub Austin


If you are interested in sponsoring and customizing a partnership, email Ashley Phillips,

You Should Apply If*…


  • …A desire to change Austin’s affordability problem
  • …Identified a good Problem-Solution fit; your solution can actually have a meaningful impact on the problem
  • …The skills and background necessary to be able to deliver your solution
  • …The ability to measure your impact and track progress against it
  • …A plan for the next twelve months with clear goals and outputs, fully aware that both are probably wrong
  • …Are based in Austin, TX and want to learn from, contribute to and build with a cohort of locally-based peers


  • …Consistent encouragement, inspiration and practical tools.
  • …Dedicated time, mentoring and tailored support as you test and build your impact and business models
  • …Specialist advice from other successful ventures and relevant experts
  • …Powerful connections, including to customers, beneficiaries, potential partners, funders, talent and other locally-based peers like you
  • …Help recruiting, building and engaging your board

*Huge thanks to the UnLtd USA team for sharing templates, inspiration & best practices as we have built this process and program.

What You Get As A Participant*


Impact Hub North and South are open to you.  Our community, our amenities, our coffee and our swings!  We price ourselves in creating spaces and moments where serendipity is at work and inspiration is constantly at play.


Drawing on the skills and expertise of our team, our network of mentors and your own cohort members, we provide customized coaching and a series of trainings in key skills for venture and impact success.


Impact Hub Austin creates a platform for leading affordability and start-up advisors, mentors and experts in government, business and non-profit to connect to you and support your growth.  We identify your challenges and connect you to the solutions to you need to succeed, including customers, beneficiaries, potential partners, funders and talent.


We know that people often learn the most from their peers, so we facilitate opportunities for you and your cohort members to share insights, resources, ideas and contacts.

*Huge thanks to the UnLtd USA team for sharing templates, inspiration & best practices as we have built this process and program.

Partnering Quotes

With a growing presence in Austin, Google is committed to helping solve our community’s biggest challenges.  Whether it’s access to STEM education or helping find innovative solutions to transportation and affordable housing concerns, Austin Googlers want to be a part of the solution.  We are excited to support the Affordable Housing Accelerator and look forward to seeing our community move forward.

– Gerardo Interiano 
Head of External Affairs for the Southwest U.S. at Google

Home is where we raise our families. It’s safety. It’s security. And as housing becomes increasingly inaccessible and substandard, it puts that basic human need in jeopardy for many Austin community members. At BuildFax, we’re passionate about the democratization of data and technology to uphold housing safety standards and to promote transparency in real estate transactions. That’s why we’re so excited that the Affordable Housing Accelerator is fostering this collaboration and we’re thrilled to support the movement to promote change.

 – Holly Tachovsky
Founder and CEO, BuildFax

Our Mentors

Our Partner and Mentor Network span government, business and non-profit professionals who have a wide variety of expertise from land code regulation & tax law to private wealth funding and successful public/private partnerships.  Be sure to come to the launch party to meet this growing community.

The best way to win is to have everyone brings their expertise to the table. Mentors are proven practitioners in Austin specific issues pertaining to housing, government, non-profits and business.  They are here to help our teams overcome major challenges when building their ventures.


The best way to win is to have everyone brings their expertise to the table. Mentors are proven practitioners in Austin specific issues pertaining to housing, government, non-profits and business.



Our Values


Our intention is to create a safe place where you can drop the masks or “roles” you may assume in your everyday life and just show up as you.  In a society where we are often categorized by our accolades and accomplishments, we put our humanity first, before career accomplishments, political position, or the size of bank accounts. To build the trust needed to change the issues we face, we have to start with authenticity.


Ultimately, all of our programs at Impact Hub Austin are created for people to grow.  The Affordable Housing Accelerator is no different.  We are learners and doers and create a space to support both.  We value feedback and see it as a gift and material for our growth.


We invite you to be be bold, to take risks!  To pay attention when your inner critic is stopping you from sharing your ideas or shining brightly.  We invite you to drop the internal judge and be aware of your judgements of others.  Our intention is to create a safe experience where you are able to explore what you’re made of and to stop putting limits on yourself or others.  From here we can walk the path less traveled while honoring the past and pioneering new solutions.


Before we jump to conclusions or judgments we ask questions.  We assume goodwill in our partners and potential collaborators and that each person in this experience is working toward the same end.  We trust each other to do what we say we will do. We may have different approaches, but we share an underlying positive intention and set of values.


We remember the goal, we remember the individuals and families affected every moment in Austin when they aren’t able to find a home.  Our goal is to tangibly change this reality now and ultimately change the narrative of Austin.  We know that this impact will only be sustained through a robust and thoughtful process.  The process ensures the outcome.  And the process is where all the learning happens!


Collaboration is the key to solving the issues of our time. We welcome diversity and partner with like-minded organizations to make a meaningful difference. We understand these issues are extremely complex and any effort to address them must be inherently collaborative.

Stay Involved

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  • Describe the mission of your venture/initiative (350 words max)
  • What challenge are you addressing within housing and transit? And how are you addressing it? Be sure to emphasize your unique value proposition (what makes you different). Within your explanation please include how your solution addresses economic disparities and structural racism/classism. (400 words max)
  • What is your current stage? Idea: We observe a need and have an idea on how to address it. Prototype: We have developed a product/service but assumptions have not been tested. Customer development needed. (Pre-revenue) Venture: Our produce/service and business model are proven and refined. We have sales and/or active beneficiaries. Growth: We are ready to scale
  • Please list and briefly describe the founding team. Please also indicate the percentage of time they commit to the venture. Do members of your founding team identify as any of the following? ( Black / Latinx / Asian / LGBTQ+/ Woman / Native American or other historically underrepresented group)
  • In 2017, Austin City Council adopted a Strategic Housing Blueprint to address ongoing issues of affordability. Please briefly describe how your venture might align and support the overall goals of the strategic plan.
  • What is your venture's biggest challenge? (Other than money.)
  • Define the competitive scope. Are there other companies offering similar products/services?? Please list competitors.
  • What metrics do you use to measure your impact? (If applicable, please give us your impact metrics)
  • Who is your ideal mentor(s) in Austin?
  • What does success look like for you if selected? What story do you want to tell after 3 months of participation?
  • In a 3-minute video, tell us why this issue is important to you and why you want to be a part of this accelerator. (An informal/mobile phone video is preferred and will be used for internal purposes only and will not be shared.)
  • If you would like to submit additional documentation (i.e. a financial plan, testimonials, business plan, videos, etc...) that you think would improve your application, please provide a link to a publicly accessible shared folder on Google Drive, Dropbox or similar location that can be accessed freely by the application review team
  • Is there anything else you would like to share?
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
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