Merritt was formed in 1989 by the city of Oakland to provide equity capital investments in affordable housing developments. Early investments targeted the urgent housing needs of the Oakland community and then expanded to include the greater San Francisco Bay Area. In recent years, Merritt Capital has expanded its scope to include investments in affordable housing properties throughout the state of California.
In 1996, Merritt Capital separated from the city of Oakland and hired an independent staff. To mark this transition, the Board of Directors changed the name of the organization from Community Alliance for Syndicated Housing, Inc. to Merritt Community Capital Corporation. Our name honors Dr. Samuel Merritt, an early mayor of Oakland, Lake Merritt, a prominent feature of that city, and acts as a tribute to the city for the instrumental role it played in the company's creation.