Republic Bank Joins SmartMH Program

Kentucky-based bank commits to program supporting prospective manufactured home buyers 

Media Contact:
Grant Beck, Marketing and Communications Manager
Phone: (202) 851-7550

LOUISVILLE, KY – October 12, 2017 – Today, Next Step Network is announcing that Republic Bank has joined the SmartMH Program. SmartMH lending partners are part of a leading group of forward-thinking organizations and businesses that help support prospective manufactured home buyers through housing counseling and homebuyer education.

“Republic Bank is a valuable partner in our efforts to expand homeownership opportunity in the state of Kentucky,” said Stacey Epperson, president and founder of Next Step. “Modern, energy-efficient manufactured homes offer an affordable avenue to homeownership for Kentucky families, and the SmartMH program helps provide the tools, resources and education they need to secure financing.”

Republic Bank has 45 full-service banking centers and one loan production office throughout five states – with 33 banking centers in 12 communities across Kentucky.  

“We are dedicated to helping those in living our communities achieve their dreams of owning a home,” said Sheila Etchen, CRA Officer of Republic Bank. “Those looking to finance, buy and own a manufactured home need allies dedicated to ensuring that they are better educated and supported in their purchasing and financing decisions.”  

Lenders that are a part of the SmartMH program engage with prospective homebuyers who want to purchase a manufactured home by helping navigate them to a HUD-certified, nonprofit housing counseling organization that provides access to homebuyer education and counseling services. SmartMH lenders can then work directly with prospective homebuyers, getting them pre-approved to purchase a modern, energy-efficient manufactured home.

The SmartMH program connects qualified homebuyers with financial institutions and manufactured home retailers to increase access to affordable, ENERGY STAR® manufactured homes with fair financing. Freddie Mac has partnered with Next Step to grow the SmartMH program, while improving access to credit for prepared, manufactured home buyers in Kentucky.


Next Step Network® mobilizes a national network of nonprofits to provide affordable housing tailored to the needs of communities that they serve. Their system – Manufactured Housing Done Right® – connects responsible financing, comprehensive homebuyer education and delivery of high-quality, ENERGY STAR® manufactured homes at scale, creating a model that brings more value to the customer. Learn more at

Republic Bancorp, Inc. (the “Company”) is the parent company of Republic Bank & Trust Company (the “Bank”). The Bank currently has 45 full-service banking centers and one loan production office throughout five states: 33 banking centers in 12 Kentucky communities – Covington, Crestwood, Elizabethtown, Florence, Frankfort, Georgetown, Independence, Lexington, Louisville, Owensboro, Shelbyville and Shepherdsville; three banking centers in southern Indiana – Floyds Knobs, Jeffersonville and New Albany; six banking centers in five Florida communities – Largo, Port Richey, St. Petersburg, Seminole, Temple Terrace; two banking centers in Tennessee – Cool Springs (Franklin) and Green Hills (Nashville) and one loan production office in Brentwood (Nashville); and one banking center in Norwood (Cincinnati), Ohio. The Bank offers internet banking at The Bank also offers separately-branded, nationwide digital banking at The Company has $5.0 billion in assets and is headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky. The Company’s Class A Common Stock is listed under the symbol “RBCAA” on the NASDAQ Global Select Market.

Republic Bank – It’s just easier here. ®