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Publication Date

May 2015


Sarah F. Riley


Ford Foundation


In 1998, the Ford Foundation, Self-Help, Fannie Mae and the UNC Center for Community Capital initiated the Community Advantage Secondary Mortgage Market Demonstration Program (CAP) to demonstrate the feasibility of extending mortgage credit to low-income and minority households. Since 2003, and with the support of the Ford Foundation, the center has gathered panel survey data from a subset of CAP mortgage recipients (the owners sample) and a group of matched renters (the renters sample) to evaluate this program. The product of this data collection is the Community Advantage Panel Survey (CAPS).

The information collected by the survey has varied by survey year, with the exception of the Universal Core module, which has been administered each year to collect key demographic information. Aside from the Universal Core, the primary survey modules concern the social and financial impacts of homeownership, including mortgage details, neighborhood quality, social capital, financial literacy, wealth and asset accumulation, and changes in household spending patterns as a result of economic conditions.

This document provides a technical overview of the design of CAPS as it pertains to
the owners sample. This overview discusses sampling methods, selection criteria and the construction of weights. In addition, it discusses CAP in the context of other programs designed to serve the needs of prospective low-to-moderate-income homeowners and then compares the weighted summary statistics of key CAPS owner demographics with those from comparable subsets of the Current Population Survey (CPS) and the American Housing Survey (AHS). These comparisons put the experiences of CAPS owners in context with respect to the national low-to-moderate income and minority population of owners in the United States.



Topics(s): Affordable Homeownership, Community Advantage Program, Mortgage Finance, Other, Research Design