As of January 2011, taxpayers can use tax refunds to buy U.S. Series Savings Bonds for their own use or for someone else. Issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Series I bonds are low-risk bonds that grow in value for up to 30 years.
Asset Coalition Toolkit for States (ACTS)
ACTS is an independent website containing tools and resources that leverage information sharing among state coalitions in the asset-building field.
Assets for Independence (AFI)
AFI is a community-based approach for giving low-income families a hand up out of poverty. Utilizing existing individual and community assets, AFI strengthens communities from within through the use of matched savings accounts called Individual Development Accounts (IDAs). Through financial education, AFI demonstrates the use and impact of IDAs to help low-income individuals move toward greater self-sufficiency.
OCC Community Developments Insights: Individual Development Accounts: An Asset Building Product for Lower-Income Consumers (February 2005)
This issue examines Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) as a tool for banks and other financial institutions to encourage lower-income persons and families to save money and thus build assets for particular financial goals. It describes why banks offer IDAs, shows how banks are involved with IDAs, and addresses barriers to the growth of IDA products. The information presented here was obtained from a variety of sources including financial institutions, IDA policymakers, nonprofit service providers, and program funders. Several hundred banks participate in IDA programs, which can receive positive consideration under the Community Reinvestment Act. Appendix 1 of the Insights paper contains a resource guide for banks considering participation in an IDA program.
Prosperity Now (formerly CFED)
Prosperity Now promotes asset-building and economic opportunity strategies, primarily in low-income and distressed communities, that bring together community practice, public policy, and private markets. CFED has promoted the IDA as a means of enabling low-income individuals to develop assets and is currently drafting certification standards for IDA Programs. CFED coordinates the American Dream Demonstration (ADD), a large-scale IDA program, which has designed and implemented IDA initiatives in 13 locations around the country.