Housing Down Payment Assistance Programs By State – Forbes Advisor

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Buying a home can be like navigating a maze. There are often a lot of ups and downs when a deal doesn’t go through, or the mortgage is delayed because the lender needs more borrower information. But for many, the foremost challenge is getting the down payment together.

Although lenders will typically look for a down payment of 20% of the home purchase price, government programs require as little as 3.5% down. As housing prices increase, even a small down payment like 3.5% means you need $10,500 to put down on a $300,000 house. And that’s not including additional closing fees or repairs that might be needed upfront on the house.


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If you’re struggling to save thousands of dollars, consider applying for down payment assistance in the form of a loan or grant, or open an individual development account (IDA), which is a matched savings program for low-income borrowers. There are more than 2,5000 programs available to help you meet your down payment requirements, from both government programs and private lenders.

Keep reading to learn more about the different types of programs, basic qualifications and other FAQs.

Find down payment assistance programs by state or nationwide.

Getting First-time Homebuyers at Top of Lender’s List

While there is help out there for many home seekers, the key is to be persistent, says Tai Christensen, diversity, equity and inclusion officer at CBC Mortgage Agency in Saratoga Springs, Utah. Christensen heads CBC Mortgage’s Chenoa Fund, a down payment assistance program that has helped some 25,000 borrowers across the country since 2013.

She points out that first-time buyers on limited budgets can often fall to the bottom of a lender’s stack as they might require more work and guidance, but that shouldn’t discourage folks from their dream of homeownership.

“What many people need to know is that as first-time buyers, you have to be your own champion,” Christensen says. “It’s okay to be the squeaky wheel. But, at the same time, know what you bring to the table and do your research.”

Start by coming up with a budget, getting your credit score and shopping around for the best lender.

Who Qualifies as a First-time Homebuyer?

Many down payment assistance programs require applicants to be first-time homebuyers, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve never owned a home. Often, a first-time homebuyer is someone who hasn’t owned a home in three years or more.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) includes the following criteria for who qualifies as first-time homebuyers:

  • The borrower has not owned a home in three years.
  • A single parent who has only owned a home with their former spouse while married.
  • Someone who is “a displaced homemaker” and has only owned a primary residence with their spouse.
  • Someone whose former home was not affixed to a permanent foundation, such as some mobile home.

5 Types of Down Payment Assistance

1. Grants

Down payment assistance grants are just that: grants that go toward qualifying borrowers’ down payments. These grants are extremely valuable because the recipient is not obligated to repay the grant.

2. Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) or Matched Savings Programs

Usually designed for low-income borrowers, IDAs are programs where borrowers can deposit money into a designated account and their funds are matched by the governing institution. For instance, if you deposit $3,000 into an IDA, the sponsoring institution will duplicate your deposit, so you’ll have $6,000 to put toward a down payment.

Many entities offer IDAs, including banks and credit unions, state and local governments, and various organizations.

3. Forgivable Second Mortgage (Zero Interest)

Forgivable mortgage loans, also known as soft second mortgages, are no-interest home loans typically used toward the down payment. Program rules and requirements differ. But usually, borrowers are not obligated to repay a forgivable loan as you own your home for a required number of years.

Borrowers who move or sell their home before the live-in period expires will likely be required to pay back the loan.

4. Deferred-payment Mortgage (Zero Interest)

A deferred-payment loan is another type of no-interest second mortgage that you can use toward your down payment. Generally, loan payments don’t kick in until you move, sell or refinance your home, or when you finish paying your first mortgage.

5. Low-interest Second Mortgage

A low-interest second mortgage is a home loan that buyers can use to put toward their down payment. Borrowers must pay on these loans each month, but the advantage is that they come with low interest rates. If you get a low-interest loan for your home down payment, remember that you will have two mortgage payments each month.

Other Nationwide Programs Available

Seek Help Through the GSEs

The government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs)—Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac—have two programs that allow lenders to accept down payments in the form of second mortgages from government programs and housing nonprofits. Community Seconds is the Fannie-approved program and Affordable Seconds is Freddie’s.

Both programs are only available for the purchase of primary residences.

To apply, find a lender who uses these programs. They should be able to tell you which qualified third-party second mortgage source is available in your area and who you would be a good candidate for.

Chenoa Fund Down Payment Assistance Program

Chenoa Fund is a down payment assistance program provided through CBC Mortgage Agency (CBCMA), which is one of nine tribally-owned enterprises of the Cedar Band Corporation.

They offer a variety of down payment assistance, including forgivable loans, for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and conventional mortgages.

“We work predominantly with borrowers of color because many don’t have the advantage of generational wealth to help with down payments,” Christensen says. “That said, anyone is welcome to apply.”

You can apply on their website at www.chenoafund.org

Down Payment Assistance By State

Step Up is a homeownership program designed specifically for moderate-income homebuyers who can afford a mortgage but need help with the down payment.

The down payment funds are secured by a 10-year second mortgage and are combined with a 30-year, fixed-rate first mortgage. Since the loans are serviced by ServiSolutions, a division of the Alabama Housing Finance Authority (AHFA), homeowners have only one check to write each month. Program participants must complete a homebuyer education course to qualify.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Earn $130,600 or less, regardless of household size or location
  • Earn 80% or less of the Area Median Income (AMI) for property location or $130,600, whichever is less
  • Participants who earn over 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI) for property location but less than $130,600 are eligible for Freddie Mac Advantage Loan Product

Alaska’s Home Opportunity Program (HOP) offers a no-interest loan for down payments, with the first $10,000 forgivable for more than five years. HOP also offers up to $3,000 in assistance for closing costs and will help buy down the primary mortgage if needed.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The home must be your primary residence
  • The annual household income must be less than 80% of the area median income per  HUD
  • Must attend a homebuyer education class approved by Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC)
  • Applicants must not be behind on child support payments

The Arizona Housing Finance Authority (AzHFA) Home Plus Program helps qualified homebuyers get down payment assistance via a deferred no-interest second mortgage. The down payment assistance second mortgage is forgiven after three years, as long as the homeowner lives in the home. If the borrower sells or refinances the mortgage within the first three years the down payment assistance loan must be repaid.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The borrower’s annual income qualification is partly determined by your lender but typically must not exceed $112,785
  • One borrower must complete a homebuyer education course before closing
  • Have a minimum credit score of 640 or better

The Arkansas Dream Down Payment Initiative (ADDI) gives qualifying low-income Arkansans down payment funds of up to 10% of the purchase price of their home, not to exceed $10,000. This is a second mortgage loan with no monthly payment and is forgivable over five years.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Household income must not exceed limits as set by the Arkansas Development Finance Authority (ADFA)
  • Borrowers must attend the Pre-Purchase Homebuyer Education Class (8 hours) prior to closing
  • Must use an approved lender and get qualified for a mortgage

The CalHFA MyHome Assistance Program from the California Housing Finance Agency offers eligible California homebuyers a deferred-payment second mortgage of up to 3.5% of the purchase price or the appraised value for the down payment and a maximum of $11,000. This program must be used in concert with the California Housing Finance Agency (CalHFA) 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must be first-time homebuyers
  • The home must be the primary residence
  • Complete a homebuyer education counseling course
  • Homebuyers’ income must not exceed MyHome income limits
  • The home purchase price must stay within the sales price limits established for the county.

The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA) has a couple of down payment assistance options for first-time buyers, including a grant of up to 3% of your first mortgage, which borrowers do not have to repay.

Borrowers can also apply for a zero-interest second mortgage for up to 4% of the first mortgage amount. There are no monthly payments, and interest won’t accrue. However, the full amount will become due upon sale of the home; if you refinance your mortgage or if the home is no longer the borrower’s primary residence.

Borrowers must use this supplementary assistance in conjunction with the CHFA FirstStep home loan, which is a 30-year, fixed-rate FHA mortgage. Borrowers have to get approved for an FHA mortgage before they can apply for the FirstStep Plus program.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must have a minimum credit score of 620 or higher.
  • Total borrower income must not exceed income limits established by the CHFA.
  • Must attend a CHFA-approved homebuyer education class (in person or on-line) before loan closing.
  • Borrowers must put at least $1,000 toward the purchase of the home.

The Connecticut Housing Finance Authority (CHFA) offers the Downpayment Assistance Program (DAP). A DAP down payment assistance loan is a second mortgage that comes with an interest rate that’s usually lower than your first mortgage. Homebuyers can borrow up to $20,000.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must be able to demonstrate that their income is enough to cover both mortgages
  • You must contribute at least $1,000 toward the acquisition costs
  • Pay the $200 application fee for the program
  • Attend a free homebuyer education course before closing on the loan

The Delaware State Housing Authority (DSHA) Preferred Plus assistance is a no-interest deferrable second mortgage ranging from 2% to 5% of your overall loan amount. Eligible borrowers can use these funds toward the down payment or closing costs. The loan must be repaid upon the sale, transfer or refinance of the home, or when it’s no longer your main residence.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers maximum household income must be at or below the program’s limits per DSHA
  • Minimum credit score of 620. (If your credit score is 659 or below you will have to enroll in housing counseling.)
  • Maximum loan amount is $417,000; there is no purchase price limit

If you’re interested in applying for this program, you must contact a participating lender.

Florida homebuyers who need help with a house down payment might have a few options available to them depending on what county they live in. To check which programs are offered in your area, visit the Homebuyer Loans Program Wizard website.

The Florida Assist (FL Assist)

The FL Assist offers a zero-interest deferred second mortgage of up to $7,500. Repayment is deferred if or until the borrower sells the house, ceases to live there, pays off or refinances the first mortgage.

HFA Preferred and HFA Advantage PLUS Second Mortgage

Borrowers can apply for 3%, 4% or 5% of the total loan amount in a forgivable second mortgage. This second mortgage is forgiven at 20% a year over a five-year term.

The Florida Homeownership Loan Program (FL HLP) Second Mortgage

The Florida Homeownership Loan Program (FL HLP) is a 15-year fully amortizing second mortgage with a fixed 3% interest rate, for an amount up to $10,000. Borrowers will have to make a monthly payment. If you move or refinance, the balance is due in full.

The Georgia Department of Community Affairs (GDCA) Georgia Dream Homeownership Program helps qualified homebuyers secure a down payment of up to $7,500 or more depending on the borrower. This is a zero-interest deferrable second loan, which only becomes payable if you sell your home or refinance your first mortgage.

Some eligible borrowers who work in public services, such as teachers, nurses and active military, or those with a family member who is living with a disability can receive up to $10,000 in down payment assistance.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • First-time homebuyers or if you have not owned a home in the past three years
  • Cannot exceed income limits
  • Must not have more than $20,000 or 20% of the sales price (whichever is greater) in liquid assets
  • Must meet the mortgage loan credit requirements

Designed to serve low- and moderate-income homebuyers, HHOC Mortgage (HHOCM) is a nonprofit affiliate of the Hawaii HomeOwnership Center. Its Down Payment and Closing Cost (DPACC) program offers down payment assistance to eligible homebuyers across the state via a 15-year deferred loan. The mortgage interest is tax-deductible and there are low monthly payments. Borrowers can use the funds toward their down payment, closing costs or both.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Low- to moderate-income (120% or less of the area median income)
  • Must be a first-time homebuyer
  • Must complete a first-time homebuyer education class through the Hawaii HomeOwnership Center
  • Borrowers agree to use the property as their primary residence and sign a yearly occupancy affidavit

For Idahoans who have good credit (680 or 640 for those who are using the First Loan mortgage), there are two down payment and closing costs programs available through the Idaho Housing and Finance Association.

Second Mortgage

The second mortgage is a 5% fixed-rate mortgage for more than 10 years that borrowers can apply toward the closing costs or down payment of their first mortgage. It is available for 2.5% or 3.5% when using the First Loan.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Income limits up to $110,000 for some products
  • Credit score of 680 required or 640 when using the First Loan
  • Finally Home! Homebuyer Education is required. Only one certificate is required per loan
  • Borrowers must contribute at least 0.5% of the sales price of their own funds to the transaction

Forgivable Loan

Borrowers don’t have to be first-time homebuyers to qualify for this zero-interest loan. You can borrow up to 3.5% of the sales price. The loan is forgiven in a tiered process over seven years of living in the home. This means 25% is forgiven if paid off after four years (months 49-60);  50% is forgiven if paid off (sale or refinance) after five years; 75% is forgiven if paid off (sale or refinance) after six years and 100% is forgiven after seven years.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • No first‐time homebuyer requirement
  • Finally Home! Homebuyer Education is required. Only one certificate is required per loan
  • Borrowers must contribute at least 0.5% of the sales price of their own funds to the transaction

The Illinois Housing Development Authority offers several down payment assistance options for DACA recipients and previous homeowners.

Opening Doors

Opening Doors offers a 30-year first mortgage with a fixed interest rate and a 0% interest second mortgage for up to $6,000 in down payment and/or closing cost assistance. The second mortgage is forgiven after five years of residing in the home.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • First-time and repeat homebuyers are eligible
  • DACA recipients are eligible
  • Live in any county statewide

IHDA Forgivable Mortgage

IHDA Forgivable mortgage offers 4% of the purchase price up to $6,000 in assistance for down payment and closing costs, forgiven monthly over 10 years.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • First-time and repeat homebuyers are eligible
  • Meet the income and purchase price limits
  • Minimum credit score of 640
  • Both new construction and existing homes are eligible

IHDA Deferred Mortgage

IHDA Deferred Mortgage offers 5% of the purchase price up to $7,500 in assistance for down payment and closing costs offered as an interest-free loan, deferred for the life of your mortgage. This means you don’t need to repay until you sell your house, refinance or pay off your mortgage.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • First-time and repeat homebuyers are eligible
  • Meet the income and purchase price limits
  • Minimum credit score of 640
  • Both new construction and existing homes are eligible

IHDA Repayable Mortgage

IHDA Repayable Mortgage offers 10% of the purchase price up to $10,000 in assistance for down payment and closing costs offered as an interest-free loan, repaid monthly over 10 years.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Meet the income and purchase price limits
  • Minimum credit score of 640
  • Both new construction and existing homes are eligible

The Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority has several programs for both first-time and repeat homebuyers to access down payment help. Eligible borrowers with an FHA 30-year mortgage through a participating lender can receive down payment assistance through two main programs.

The First Place (FP) Program

FHA borrowers can get down payment assistance for 6% of the purchase price but not beyond the appraised value.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or veteran, or the property is in a qualified census tract.
  • Minimum FICO credit score of 640, with a debt-to-income (DTI) ratio of 45% or less.
  • If your FICO score is at least 680, but your DTI is greater than 45%, they will accept up to a 50% DTI

The Next Home (NH) Program

Borrowers with FHA mortgages can receive down payment assistance for 3.5% of the purchase price, so long as it does not exceed the appraised value.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Minimum FICO credit score of 640, with a DTI of 45% or less.
  • If your FICO score is at least 680 and your DTI is greater than 45%, they will accept up to a 50% DTI.

The Iowa Finance Authority has two first-time homebuyer down payment assistance options available: a grant or second loan.

  1. The grant is for $2,500 that can go toward the down payment and closing costs. Borrowers do not have to repay this money.
  2. The second loan is for up to 5% of the home’s sale price or $5,000, whichever is less. You have to repay it when you sell your home, refinance your mortgage or when you pay off your first mortgage. There is no monthly payment required.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Maximum household income limits depend on the county but the range is $79,500 to $99,700 for a household of two
  • Purchase price must not exceed set limits which vary by county but is currently set around $311,000 or up to $381,000 in certain areas
  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or you haven’t owned a home the last three years; a military member who was not dishonorably discharged; or you are buying a home in one of Iowa’s designated “Targeted Area.” Use the Iowa Finance Authority’s eligibility check on their website to find such areas

The Kansas Housing Resources Corporation (KHRC) First Time Homebuyer Program offers eligible borrowers a no-interest loan at 15% or 20% of the home purchase price. The loan is forgiven if you stay in the home for 10 years.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must be first-time homebuyers or not have owned a home for three years
  • Must have a median income at or below 80% of their area
  • Borrowers must pitch in 2% (but no more than 10%) of the sale price from their own funds

The Kentucky Housing Corporation offers two types of down payment assistance programs depending on your income: regular and affordable down payment assistance (DPA).

Eligible borrowers can receive up to $6,000 in down payment funds through both programs. The main difference between the two programs is in the interest rate. The regular DPA second mortgage is a fixed 5.5%, 10-year second mortgage loan; whereas the affordable DPA program is a 1% fixed-rate loan with a 10-year term.

The Louisiana Housing Corporation has a down payment assistance program for eligible Louisiana homebuyers who get a mortgage through its Market Rate Conventional Program. You don’t have to be a first-time buyer to qualify; however, you must not exceed the area income limits. For qualified borrowers, you’ll receive up to 4% in down payment assistance.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The maximum allowed income is 80% Area Median Income (AMI) by parish and household size
  • Minimum credit score of 640
  • Maximum loan amount of $453,100
  • A 97% loan-to-value (LTV) ratio
  • Homebuyer education is required for first-time homebuyers
  • The property must be located in Louisiana

Through the Maine State Housing Authority First-Home Advantage Grant, eligible homebuyers can receive a grant of up to $3,500, which can be used toward the house down payment or closing costs. This grant does not have to be repaid.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer, or not held an ownership interest in your principal home within the past three years; or you must be a veteran, retired military or on qualified active duty
  • Applicants must take a program-approved homebuyer education class before closing
  • The borrower must contribute at least 1% of the loan, though the cost of the required education class can count towards your 1% contribution

Maryland’s Department of Housing and Community Development offers several programs that help with your down payment, including:

  • Flex 5000. This a no-interest second mortgage for up to $5,000 to be used for the down payment and closing costs. This loan only becomes payable when you finish paying off or refinancing the first mortgage.
  • Flex 3% Loan. Borrowers can get a second loan equal to 3% of the first mortgage in down payment assistance. This is a zero-interest, deferred second mortgage which only becomes payable when you finish paying off or refinancing the first mortgage.
  • Flex 3% Grant. This down payment assistance grant is equal to 3% of the first mortgage. The grant does not get repaid.
  • Flex 4% Grant. This down payment assistance grant is equal to 4% of the first mortgage. The grant also does not get repaid.

Eligibility requirements vary per program.

MassHousing offers two down payment assistance programs for Massachusetts homebuyers, but the amount you receive differs depending on where you live in the Bay State:

  • Up to $25,000. To get up to $25,000, or 5% of a home’s purchase price, the buyer must reside in the following areas: Boston, Attleboro, Barnstable, Brockton, Chelsea, Chicopee, Everett, Fall River, Fitchburg, Haverhill, Holyoke, Lawrence, Leominster, Lowell, Lynn, Malden, Methuen, New Bedford, Peabody, Pittsfield, Quincy, Revere, Salem, Springfield, Taunton, Westfield or Worcester.
  • Up to $15,000. Anywhere outside of the above-mentioned cities and buyers might be eligible for up to $15,000 in down payment assistance, or 5% of the home’s purchase price.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Borrowers must meet credit score and income requirements per lender
  • First-time homebuyers or those purchasing a multi-family property must complete a homebuyer education course.
  • The property must be the borrower’s primary residence

Homebuyers can apply for these programs through participating lenders.

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) has a down payment assistance (DPA) program available to borrowers who use an MSHDA first mortgage. Eligible borrowers can receive up to $7,500 in down payment assistance, which can be used in several ways, including to pay closing costs, prepaid expenses and the down payment.

The DPA loan comes with 0% interest and no payments until the home is sold, refinanced, transferred or the MSHDA first mortgage is paid in full. To qualify for an MSHDA first mortgage, borrowers must meet certain income and credit score requirements.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • A credit score of at least 640, or 660 for multiple-section manufactured homes
  • DPA loan is only available with an MSHDA first mortgage (which has its own set of borrower requirements)
  • The sales price of the house can’t exceed $224,500 statewide

Minnesota Housing, the state’s housing finance agency, offers two types of down payment housing assistance programs. Both programs work in conjunction with Minnesota Housing’s Start Up or Step Up mortgage programs. Both programs are designed to help low- to moderate-income homebuyers get a mortgage.

Monthly Payment Loan

  • Available with Start Up or Step Up
  • Down payment assistance of up to $17,000
  • Fully amortized over 10 years
  • Interest rate equal to the first mortgage rate

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The home must be the primary residence
  • Homebuyer contribution must be the lesser of $1,000 or 1% of purchase price
  • Same income limits of the first mortgage program (Start Up or Step Up)
  • Must be a first-time borrower for the Start Up program; must be a repeat borrower for the Step Up program, or a first-time buyer who’s not eligible for Start Up
  • Available only through approved lenders
  • Homebuyer education required of at least one borrower if all borrowers are first-time homebuyers

Deferred Payment Loans

  • Only available with the Start Up program
  • Down payment assistance of up to  $11,000 with Deferred Payment Loan or up to $15,000 with Deferred Payment Loan Plus
  • Interest-free deferred loan for length of the first mortgage
  • Repayment of the full loan balance is required when:
    • The borrower moves
    • The home is sold
    • The first mortgage loan is refinanced (unless refinancing with our Step Up Program)
    • The first mortgage loan is paid off (prior to or at the end of the loan term)

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The home must be the primary residence
  • Homebuyer contribution must be the lesser of $1,000 or 1% of purchase price
  • The borrower must adhere to income limits per mortgage guidelines
  • Homebuyer education required of at least one borrower
  • Available only through approved lenders

The Mississippi Home Corporation (MHC), the state’s housing finance agency, offers two main down payment assistance programs for homebuyers. Both programs include the mortgage and the down payment, so it’s like a one-stop shop for buyers who need assistance.

Smart Solution

The Smart Solution program is a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage program for both first-time and repeat homebuyers. According to the Mississippi Home Corporation, they offer competitive interest rates. As an additional add-on option, qualified borrowers can also get down payment assistance of up to 4.5% of the full loan amount.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Minimum credit score of 640
  • Household income can’t exceed $95,000

MRB 7

The MRB 7 program is a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage that comes with built-in down payment help in the form of a $7,000 10-year deferred second mortgage. The MHC will forgive the $7,000 and remove the lien if the borrower stays in the home for at least 10 years. However, if the borrower refinances the mortgage, sells the house or moves before the 10 years is up, the $7,000 must be paid in full.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Credit score requirements are based on participating lender guidelines
  • Can’t exceed income limits per county guidelines

The Cash Assistance Loan program offered by The Missouri Housing Development Commission (MHDC) is designed to help first-time homebuyers or those who haven’t owned a home for at least three years finance their down payment and closing costs.

The assistance comes via a second forgivable mortgage of up to 4% of the first mortgage amount. The loan amount will start to be forgiven at year five in increments (by 1/60 every month) until the tenth year, when it will be completely forgiven.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • For single-family homes, the purchase price in target areas can’t exceed $381,308; in non-target areas, the maximum purchase price is $311,979
  • For duplexes, the purchase price in target areas can’t exceed $488,215; in non-target areas, the maximum purchase price is $399,448
  • Maximum income limits vary by county and whether your home is located in a target or non-target area

Montana Housing offers two down payment assistance programs for eligible homebuyers: the Bond Advantage Down Payment Assistance Program and the MBOH Plus 0% Deferred Down Payment Assistance Program. The funds from both programs can be used for both down payment and closing cost assistance.

Both programs are available through participating lenders.

Bond Advantage Down Payment Assistance Program

  • Up to 5% of sales price, with a maximum $10,000
  • 15-year amortizing loan with low monthly payments

Eligibility requirements include:

  • A Montana Housing 30-year first mortgage, both loans have the same fixed rate
  • Borrower must contribute at least $1,000 of their own funds to the transaction
  • Homebuyers must take an education course
  • Minimum 620 credit score

MBOH Plus 0% Deferred Down Payment Assistance Program

  • Available for up to 5% of sales price, with a maximum $6,500
  • 0% second loan, no monthly payments
  • Payoff is due upon transfer or sale of property, or refinance or payoff of the first loan

Eligibility requirements include:

  • A Montana Housing 30-year first mortgage, both loans have the same fixed rate
  • Borrower must contribute at least $1,000 of their own funds to the transaction
  • Homebuyers must take an education course
  • A minimum 620 credit score
  • Maximum debt-to-income (DTI) ratio of 43% for all borrowers
  • Income limit $55,000 for one to two people and $65,000 for three or more people

The Homebuyer Assistance (HBA) Program offered by the Nebraska Investment Finance Authority (NIFA) helps buyers with the down payment and closing costs and only requires buyers to have a minimum investment of $1,000 in many cases (this might vary depending on the loan type).

The maximum amount of assistance for the second mortgage loan is 5% of the home’s purchase price and can’t exceed $10,000. The term of the second mortgage loan is 10 years or 120 months. The interest rate on the second mortgage loan is 1%.

Borrowers can use the HBA program in concert with various loan types, such as conventional mortgages, FHA loans, USDA or VA loans.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or have not owned a home in more than three years
  • Maximum household income limits vary by county
  • The maximum purchase price varies by county

The Nevada Housing Division’s Home is Possible down payment assistance program offers up to 5% of the home loan value for eligible residents of the Silver State. A helpful feature of this program is that you don’t have to be a first-time buyer to qualify. There are also Home is Possible programs specifically for veterans and teachers.

Eligible borrowers pay just a one-time fee of just $755, which can be paid at closing. That money can either be used toward your down payment or closing costs. The Home is Possible program is available through participating lenders.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must not own a property at the time of closing
  • For government loans (FHA, USDA, VA) qualifying income must be below $105,000
  • Income limits vary for conventional loans depending on the lender
  • Home price must be below $548,250
  • Minimum credit score of 640 (or 680 for manufactured homes)
  • Homebuyer education course is required
  • Must meet standard underwriting requirements

New Hampshire Housing has two cash-assistance programs for eligible homebuyers: the Our Home Flex Plus (FHA, VA and RD) and Home Preferred Plus program. Both programs provide up to 4% of the base loan amount to help with downpayment and closing costs.

The Cash Assistance program is a second mortgage that is forgiven after four years as long as you don’t sell, refinance or file for bankruptcy during that initial period. Homebuyers applying for either program must attend a home education program.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The Home Flex Plus program has an income limit of up to $137,400
  • Home Preferred Plusserves borrowers with incomes up to 80% Area Median Income (AMI)
  • Home Preferred Plus Over 80% AMI finances borrowers whose income exceeds 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI), as determined by Fannie Mae. The maximum income limit for all Home Preferred Over 80% AMI products is $137,400.

These cash assistance programs are available through participating lenders.

The New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA) Down Payment Assistance Program (DPA) is a forgivable loan of up to $10,000 for qualified first-time homebuyers in the state of New Jersey.

First-time homebuyers are anyone who hasn’t owned a home in the past three years and doesn’t have another primary residence within the 60 days of closing. The funds can be used toward the down payment or closing cost. The DPA is an interest-free, five-year forgivable second loan with no monthly payments.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The DPA must be used in concert with an NJHMFA first mortgage loan
  • There are maximum household income limits that vary by county and whether you’re in a target or non-targeted area
  • There are maximum purchase price limits, for both target and non-target areas
  • You must meet certain credit score and DTI ratio requirements

This program is available through participating lenders.

The New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority, which helps low- and moderate-income New Mexicans get financing for affordable housing, offers two down payment assistance programs. The FirstDown and NextHome programs are second mortgage loans that can be used toward the down payment and closing costs.

FIRSTDown

  • Exclusively for first-time homebuyers
  • Up to $8,000 to use for down payment and closing costs
  • Subject to the same buyer requirements and must be used in conjunction with New Mexico’s FIRSTHome mortgage program
  • There are income and credit score requirements that are the same when qualifying for the FIRSTHome mortgage

NEXTHome

  • Borrower does not have to be a first-time homebuyer
  • Program is a combination of the first and the second mortgage
  • Second loan is equal to 3% of the total first loan amount
  • The second loan does not have a monthly payment and can be forgiven if certain conditions are met
  • Requires a minimum $500 contribution from the homebuyer’s own funds
  • Minimum credit score of 620

The State of New York Mortgage Agency (SONYMA) helps low- and moderate-income New York state residents gain access to affordable homeownership.

SONYMA’s Down Payment Assistance Loan (DPAL) is a forgivable no-interest, no-monthly payment loan available for all buyers who use a SONYMA mortgage program. The DPAL can also be used toward any required mortgage insurance. After 10 years, the loan is forgiven unless you sell your home or refinance your mortgage before then.

The minimum loan amount is $1,000 and the maximum loan amount is 3% of the purchase price (up to $15,000) or $3,000, whichever is highest.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The down payment assistance program is an add-on feature that must be used in tandem with a SONYMA mortgage loan
  • Must not exceed purchase price limits (which varies by region)

The North Carolina Housing Finance Agency offers down payment assistance options for low- to moderate-income borrowers in North Carolina.

NC Home Advantage Mortgage

The NC Home Advantage Mortgage offers down payment assistance up to 5% of the loan amount for both first-time and repeat homebuyers.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Income must not exceed $99,000
  • Home must be located in North Carolina
  • Must occupy the home as their principal residence within 60 days of closing
  • Minimum credit score of 640
  • Legal resident of the United States

NC 1st Home Advantage Down Payment

The NC 1st Home Advantage Down Payment program offers $8,000 in down payment help that may provide more help for first-time buyers compared to the NC Home Advantage Mortgage.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must be first-time buyers (this includes buyers who haven’t owned a home within the past three years), military veterans or buyers who are purchasing in the targeted census tracts
  • Meet income and sales price limits
  • Home must be located in North Carolina
  • Must occupy the home as their principal residence within 60 days of closing
  • Minimum credit score of 640
  • Legal resident of the United States

The North Dakota Housing Finance Agency (NDHFA) has two main statewide down payment assistance programs, the DCA and Start Program.

The DCA and Start Program offers low-income borrowers 3% of the first mortgage loan amount in the form of a credit towards your out-of-pocket cash requirement. This can be used for a down payment, closing costs and prepaid items.

The DCA program, however, cannot be used in conjunction with any other down payment assistance programs.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers can’t exceed income limits, which vary based on county and family size
  • Both programs require a $500 out-of-pocket cash investment from borrowers
  • Borrowers must use the property as their primary residence
  • Homes can’t be within a 100-year flood plain for the DCA program
  • Only one- to two-unit properties (one unit must be occupied by the borrower) are acceptable

Both programs are available through participating lenders.

The Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA) Your Choice! Down Payment Assistance program gives eligible homebuyers the choice between a forgivable loan of 2.5% or 5% of the home’s purchase price. The funds can be applied towards down payments, closing costs or other pre-closing expenses.

After seven years, the loan is forgiven unless you sell or refinance your home before then, at which point the total amount would be due.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must meet income and purchase price limits depending on your county of residence
  • Eligible borrowers must complete a free homebuyer education course
  • The following credit score minimums by loan type apply:
    • At least 640 for conventional, USDA and VA Loans
    • At least 650 for FHA Loans

This program is available through participating lenders.

The Oklahoma Housing Finance Agency (OHFA) Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance program gives eligible borrowers 3.5% of the total loan amount, which can be put toward the house down payment and closing costs.

Applicable loan types include FHA, USDA-RD, VA or conventional loans.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The home must be in Oklahoma
  • The home will be used as your primary residence and must be occupied within 60 days of closing
  • Cannot exceed the maximum household income requirements which vary by family size and home location
  • Minimum credit score of 640

The Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance is available through participating lenders.

There are many down payment assistance programs available throughout Oregon. However, there is no statewide program that serves borrowers in different counties. For more information on the down payment assistance programs in your county, you can check the Oregon Housing and Community Services website.

State funds are awarded to these various assistance programs throughout the year.

The Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA) offers many down payment programs. The PHFA suggests homebuyers talk with a participating lender to determine which program works best for them.

One of their down payment assistance programs is the Keystone Advantage Assistance Loan Program, which offers a second 0% interest, 10-year mortgage of up to 4% of the purchase price or market value, or $6,000, whichever is less. These funds can be used toward the down payment and closing costs.

The Keystone Advantage Assistance can be used with the following PHFA first mortgage programs:

  • HFA Preferred (Lo MI)
  • Keystone Government Loan
  • Keystone Home loan

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Minimum credit score of 660
  • Minimum loan amount is $500
  • Borrowers’ liquid assets can’t be more than $50,000 after deducting the funds needed to close on the loan

Rhode Island Housing’s Extra Assistance program provides down payment assistance to eligible first-time homebuyers in Rhode Island. Approved applicants can get up to 6% of the purchase price, or $15,000, whichever is lower, as down payment help. The assistance is a second mortgage lien on your home.

In most cases, the interest rate on an Extra Assistance loan will be zero or the same as the interest rate on your RIHousing first mortgage. There are no fees or charges.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • You must be a first-time homebuyer and purchasing a 1-4 family home or condo in Rhode Island
  • Minimum credit score of 660
  • You must complete a homebuyer education course
  • Your home purchase price and income must be within Rhode Island’s housing price and income limits

The South Carolina Housing Down Payment Assistance (DPA) plan offers up to $8,000 in down payment assistance for both new and existing homes. The DPA may be used towards a borrower’s down payment and closing costs.

Assistance comes via a 0% interest rate second mortgage with either a 10- or 20-year term, which is determined by your total household income. Borrowers who are at or below 80% of the area median income (AMI) are eligible for the 10-year term mortgage. Borrowers above 80% AMI may qualify for the 0% interest 20-year term second mortgage.

There are no monthly payments. Both loans may be forgiven after 10 or 20 years, depending on the loan term, as long as the home is the borrower’s primary residence for the first 10 or 20 years.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must meet sales price and income limits
  • Must meet South Carolina Housing’s first mortgage requirements
  • The borrower must occupy the subject property for the term (10 or 20 years) of the lien for the assistance to be fully forgiven

The DPA program is available through participating lenders.

South Dakota Housing Development Authority’s (SDHDA) Fixed Rate Plus loan is a second loan with no interest that offers up to 3% or 5% in downpayment and closing costs assistance. The balance is not due until you sell your home or pay off your first mortgage. Borrowers don’t have to make monthly payments and there are no additional fees, so long as you satisfy the loan terms.

The Fixed Rate Plus loan program and its specific borrower requirements depends on each lender. A list of participating lenders can be found here.

The Housing Fund, a private organization created to help Tennessee homebuyers access affordable housing, offers down payment assistance from $5,000 up to $35,000. This assistance comes in the form of a second loan. However, it’s important to note that the interest rate ranges from 5% to 10%, based on your income tier and the type of loan.

For borrowers who take out a $5,000 to $10,000 loan, a 10-year term is available. Loans of $10,000 or more have a 15-year term.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • The purchased home must be your primary residence
  • The lender on your first mortgage loan must be FHA-approved in Tennessee
  • Borrowers must contribute 1% or more of their own funding to the home purchase price
  • A homebuyer education course is needed

There are also down payment assistance programs by county in Tennessee, some may offer forgivable loans which do not have to be repaid.

The Texas State Affordable Housing Corporation Forgivable Second Lien Down Payment Assistance provides funding for down payment and closing costs in the form of a second lien with 0% interest and no monthly payments. The assistance will cover up 3% to 5% of the total purchase price. Borrowers can use this program in conjunction with government (VA, FHA, USDA) and conventional loans.

After three years, the balance is forgiven as long as the borrower does not sell the home or refinance the first mortgage.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Minimum 620 FICO credit score
  • You do not have to be a first-time homebuyer

The Community Development Corporation of Utah has a Down Payment Assistance (DPA) program for low- to moderate-income households. The assistance comes in the form of deferred loans with no payments and zero interest that are forgivable after a period of time. The assistance amounts vary with each program but can range up to $10,000 or $14,000, depending on the city and county.

The DPA program is available for qualifying areas depending on the funding availability. Currently, the only funding available through Dec. 10, 2021 is for Taylorsville City.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Must be within income limits, which vary by area
  • House must be the borrower’s primary residence and located within eligible city boundaries
  • Applicant must contribute at least $1,000 in personal funds to the purchase
  • Before submitting a DPA application, borrowers should be under contract to purchase a property
  • Your DTI cannot exceed 45% to 50% of the household monthly gross income
  • You must have enough cash reserves to cover at least one month of the total monthly housing expenses
  • You must complete a counseling session from a HUD-approved agency

The Vermont Housing Finance Agency (VHFA) offers a few down payment assistance programs for eligible borrowers, including the Move program, Move MCC, VHFA Advantage and the ASSIST program. These programs must be used in conjunction with a VHFA mortgage and most offer up to $825 savings on Vermont Property Transfer Tax at closing.

Move Program

  • Down payment assistance of up to $7,500
  • Lower monthly mortgage insurance when using a conventional loan (Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac)

Eligibility requirements include:

Move MCC and VHFA Assist

  • Down payment assistance of up to $5,000

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Must not exceed purchase price limits
  • Borrowers must not earn more than income limits

ASSIST Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance

  • Available with VHFA Move, Move MCC, and Advantage programs
  • 0% interest loan with no monthly payments
  • Repaid when you sell, refinance or pay off your mortgage
  • Borrower and non-borrowing spouse combined liquid and non-retirement assets must be under $30,000

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Must not exceed purchase price limits
  • Borrowers must not earn more than income limits

The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (VDHCD) has a down payment assistance program for first-time buyers or those who have not owned a home in at least three years called the HOMEownership Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance program (DPA).

Borrowers can receive up to 10% or 15% of the sales price for the down payment as well as $2,500 for the closing costs.

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Borrowers must not earn more than 80% of the area median income (AMI)
  • Must get homeownership counseling and complete a HUD-certified homebuyer education course through VHDA or Neighborworks
  • Borrowers must contribute 1% of the home’s sales price from their own funds

The HOMEownership Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance program is available through participating lenders.

The Washington State Housing Finance Commission (WSHFC) offers several statewide programs to help borrowers obtain down payment assistance. These programs, however, are only available in conjunction with WSHFC home loan programs, which include the Home Advantage or Opportunity programs.

The down payment assistance amount varies by program but averages $10,000 per household. It comes in the form of a low-interest (0% to 4% depending on the program) repayable loan. The loan can be rolled into your first mortgage, so you’ll just have one payment.

However, most of WSHFC’s down payment loans are payment deferred, which means you don’t have to repay the loan until the mortgage is paid off or until you sell, transfer, move out or refinance the property.

Washington’s DPAs include:

  • Home Advantage DPA. Eligible borrowers can get up to 4% of the first mortgage if they use the Home Advantage loan or up to 5% if they use the conventional HFA Preferred or HFA Advantage loan.
  • Home Advantage DPA Needs Based Option. Borrowers who use the Home Advantage loan and with certain income limits may receive up to $10,000.
  • Opportunity DPA. Up to $15,000, for borrowers using the state’s House Key Opportunity loan.
  • Veterans. Eligible military veterans can get up to $10,000 for down payment assistance.
  • HomeChoice. Borrowers with a disability or disabled family member living with them may be eligible for up to $15,000.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Must have a WSHFC mortgage to qualify
  • Household income can’t exceed the program limits (up to $145,000)
  • Minimum credit score of 620

The West Virginia Housing Development Fund offers down payment and closing cost assistance loans in conjunction with the Homeownership and Movin’ Up first mortgage programs. These programs are designed to help both first-time and repeat homebuyers access homeownership.

Assistance comes in the form of a 15-year, fixed-rate second mortgage loan. The interest rate is currently at 2%.

Homeownership Program

  • $7,500 for loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio of at least 90% of the purchase price
  • $10,000 for loans with a LTV ratio less than 90% of the purchase price

Movin’ Up Program

  • $5,000 for loans with a LTV ratio of at least 90% of the purchase price
  • $8,000 for loans with a LTV ratio less than 90% of the purchase price

The Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) offers several down payment assistance programs, which vary by loan type and fall under two basic programs: WHEDA Easy Close DPA and the WHEDA Capital Access DPA. Depending on the program, borrowers can get either 3% or 6% of the purchase price for the down payment.

WHEDA Easy Close DPA

This program is a 10-year, fixed-rate second mortgage with monthly payments. The maximum assistance is 6% of the purchase price that’s in the form of a second mortgage in conjunction with a first mortgage that must either be a conventional loan or FHA loan through the state’s programs. The interest rate is the same as the first mortgage.

WHEDA Capital Access DPA

This is a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage with a 0% interest rate and no monthly payments. The maximum amount is either $3,050 or 3.5% of the purchase price, whichever is greater. The loan comes due if you refinance your mortgage or when you pay off your first mortgage. There are no monthly payments.

The Wyoming Community Development Authority (WCDA) offers two statewide programs to help eligible homebuyers get down payment assistance. These programs are the Home$tretch DPA Loan Product and the Amortizing DPA Loan Product. Both programs offer assistance through a loan amount of $10,000 or less.

Home$tretch DPA Loan Product

  • Must be used in conjunction with the state’s First-time Homebuyer and Spruce Up products
  • 0% interest rate and 0.080% APR based on an average loan amount of $5,500
  • No monthly payment
  • Payment is due upon sale of the home, refinance or 30-year maturity

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Minimum credit score of 620
  • A contribution from the buyer of at least $1,500 (may be a gift)

Amortizing DPA Loan Product

  • Must be used with the HFA Preferred (with MI or no MI) and Advantage products only
  • Fixed interest rate
  • Maximum 10-year term

Eligibility requirements include:

  • Minimum credit score of 620
  • A contribution from the buyer of at least $1,500 (may be a gift)



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