CDFI Certification

Important Updates about CDFI Certification

For information on the revised CDFI Certification Application, click here.  

CDFI Certification

CDFI Certification is your gateway to the CDFI community, a network of mission-driven institutions that serve and empower economically distressed communities. This translates into real change for the communities and people who need it most.

Download CDFI Certification Fact Sheet (English) ›
Download CDFI Certification Fact Sheet (Español) ›

Opening Date
December 7, 2023



Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) Certification is a designation given by the CDFI Fund to specialized organizations that provide financial services in low-income communities and to people who lack access to financing. CDFIs include regulated institutions such as community development banks and credit unions, and non-regulated institutions like loan and venture capital funds. By building the capacity of a nationwide network of CDFIs, the CDFI Fund works to empower low-income and underserved people and communities to enter the financial mainstream.

Certified CDFIs are eligible to apply for awards through a variety of programs offered by the CDFI Fund. These awards enable CDFIs to finance a wide range of activities—including mortgage lending for first-time homebuyers, flexible underwriting for community facilities, and commercial loans for businesses in low-income areas. Through varying strategies, each CDFI contributes to the cultivation of a healthy and stable local economy.

For more information, please see our CDFI Certification Fact Sheet (English / Español).


To apply for CDFI Certification, your organization must submit an application to the CDFI Fund for review. The CDFI Certification Application must demonstrate that the applicant meets each of the following requirements:

  • Is a legal entity at the time of Certification application;
  • Has a primary mission of promoting community development;
  • Is a financing entity;
  • Primarily serves one or more target markets;
  • Provides development services in conjunction with its financing activities;
  • Maintains accountability to its defined target market; and
  • Is a non-government entity and not under the control of any government entity (Tribal governments excluded).

For more detailed information, please refer to the application resources found in the section below.

Are you an individual or business seeking a loan?

Click here to learn how to find CDFIs and CDEs that are providing services in your community.

Monthly Conference Calls

The CDFI Fund conducts monthly CDFI Certification Conference Calls which are intended to serve as a forum for potential CDFI Certification Applicants, Certified CDFIs, and other CDFI Certification stakeholders to ask questions and discuss CDFI Certification and the CDFI Certification process.

Access Instructions

The CDFI Fund now uses Zoom for all conference calls and webinar services. No prior registration is necessary. To access the current monthly conference calls, use the link provided below. 


Please click the link below to join the webinar:

Passcode: 010472

Webinar ID: 160 541 6367

Find your local number:


CDFI Certification Conference Call Schedule
  • Thursday, February 15, 2024 – 3:00pm – 4:00pm ET
  • Thursday, March 21, 2024 – 3:00pm – 4:00pm ET
  • Thursday, April 18, 2024 – 3:00pm – 4:00pm ET
  • Thursday, May 16, 2024 - 3:00pm – 4:00pm ET
  • Thursday, June 20, 2024 – 3:00pm – 4:00pm ET
  • Thursday, July 18, 2024 – 3:00pm – 4:00pm ET
  • Thursday, August 15, 2024 – 3:00pm – 4:00pm ET
  • Thursday, September 19, 2024 – 3:00pm – 4:00pm ET
  • Thursday, October 17, 2024 – 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm ET
  • Thursday, November 21, 2024 – 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm ET
  • Thursday, December 19, 2024 – 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm ET

CDFI Contact Information

Have questions/concerns about CDFI Certification?

OCPE Helpdesk
Phone: (202) 653-0423

IT Helpdesk
Phone: (202) 653-0300