Northwest Bank Provides Penny Hill Homes with Financing for Its Latest Neighborhood Revitalization Investments in South Bend, Indiana

March 10, 2023

South Bend, Indiana – Penny Hill Homes has bought and renovated 35 historic houses near downtown South Bend, Indiana, over the past five years, creating beautifully restored homes and revitalizing a neighborhood along West LaSalle Street. Now, with the support of Northwest Bank, Penny Hill Homes is expanding into two other redevelopment areas in the city with the purchase of its first two commercial properties. Northwest provided loans totaling $748,000.00 to finance the new venture.

The first commercial property, located just south of downtown South Bend at 435 S. Michigan Street, features over a dozen artists’ studios, a daycare center and three retail storefronts. Penny Hill plans to expand on the existing artistic aesthetic by adding gallery and performance spaces, more studios and unique retail offerings such as vintage clothing. The second commercial property, at 521, 525, 529, 533 Lincolnway West, 528 W. Marion Street and 528 W. Madison Street, is also mixed-use and includes four buildings and an old barn that will be refurbished and used for weddings and events.

Penny Hill Homes was founded by Jennifer Hennecke and Sarah Hill, employees at the St. Joseph County Public Library, as a way to bring together their passions for restoring old houses and revitalizing underserved neighborhoods near where they live.

“As proud residents of the area we invest in, it’s been our privilege to help bring overlooked historic houses and neighborhoods back to life,” said Ms. Hill. “Backed by the resources and guidance of Northwest, we’re excited about the opportunity to contribute to economic development in South Bend with the acquisition of these commercial properties.”

Sarah and Jennifer are part of South Bend’s growing, nationally recognized incremental development efforts, which rely on community members making gradual investments and improvements in underserved neighborhoods to bring about positive change.

“We wouldn’t be where we are today without the help of Northwest,” said Ms. Hennecke. “Northwest Bank is a vital partner to Penny Hill Homes as we move into our next era of helping reinvigorate communities within the city of South Bend.”

“Northwest Bank is honored to partner with Sarah and Jennifer as they continue to realize their vision of bringing neglected areas of South Bend back to life,” said Gary Benedix, business banking officer at Northwest Bank. “The work that they are doing to revitalize the South Bend community is central to Northwest’s goal of supporting and strengthening local communities.”

 Penny Hill.png

About Northwest

Headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, Northwest Bancshares, Inc. is the bank holding company of Northwest Bank. Founded in 1896 and headquartered in Warren, Pennsylvania, Northwest Bank is a full-service financial institution offering a complete line of business and personal banking products, as well as treasury management solutions and wealth management services. As of December 31, 2022, Northwest operated 142 full-service community banking offices and eight free standing drive-through facilities in Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio and Indiana. The common stock of Northwest Bancshares, Inc. is listed on the NASDAQ Global Select Market ("NWBI"). Additional information regarding Northwest Bancshares, Inc. and Northwest Bank can be accessed online at