You sit in your small apartment, envisioning a home where the living room, dining room, and kitchen aren’t the same room. You imagine buying a house where you look out of the front windows and see a vast green lawn vs. a parking lot. You’re tired of renting and would rather own a home, but you’re worried about having enough money to buy a new house. Let’s look at some down payment and grant options available to help you purchase a new home.
When you’re ready to buy a house but need help with the down payment or closing cost, or just need an affordable housing option, there are three states prepared to help you realize your dream.
Riverbank, CA, now offers grants to benefit very low to moderate-income individuals. The grants are provided by the State of California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD).
As a first-time home buyer in Riverbank, you may be eligible for a second loan if you only qualified for a loan under the average home value. You can receive a maximum of $100,000 or 50% of the home’s price, whichever is the lowest. The home must cost at least $313,500, and repayment is a deferred 30-year loan at 3% interest. There are income limits, and the property must be within the city limits of Riverbank, CA.
Riverbank is also offering more affordable housing for seniors, disabled, and very low, low, and moderate-income residents thanks to the HOME Investment Partnership Program, the City Housing Division, and the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC).
Willow Pointe Apartments has set aside units for households earning less than 50-60% of the median income for the area. Also, Riverbank Senior Apartments is offering affordable housing options to the elderly, thanks to funding. Riverbank Housing Authority offers 60 units to seniors and 30 to low-income families. Contact each complex for more information.
If you know someone who is low-income and owns a home in disrepair, they may be able to qualify for the Housing Rehabilitation Program. Under this program, homeowners can be eligible for an affordable city loan to address repairs related to health and safety needs.
If you are a first-time homeowner or haven’t owned a home in at least three years and are low to moderate-income, you may qualify for a CHAC (Colorado Housing Assistance Corp.) low-interest loan in Colorado.
This CHAC loan is for the down payment and closing costs and is considered a second mortgage (lien) on the property. In other words, this loan will be in addition to your first loan from a mortgage lender.
You must provide a minimum contribution of $1,000 ($750 for the disabled) and attend an approved CHAC first-time home buyer class to be qualified for CHAC down payment assistance.
Missoula, MT, offers a community land trust (CLT) for people who otherwise wouldn’t be able to own a home. Known as the North-Missoula Community Development Corporation (NMCDC), the trust develops and oversees permanent, affordable housing, including refurbished and new homes.
When a qualified individual or family purchases a CLT house, the new homeowner pays for the house and leases the land from CTL. Since the homeowner isn’t buying the land, the overall purchase price is typically lower than comps in the area. The homeowner earns equity and can make home improvements like any homeowner. When they’re ready to move on, they agree to sell the home at a restricted price to keep it affordable for the next CTL trust homeowner.
Down payment assistance, closing costs, and affordable housing are available in most U.S. states. Talk to your local real estate agent and reach out to the groups mentioned above to find out more about affordable homes in your area. You could be in a new home before you know it!
For more information on home buying, check out Reazo's extensive home-buyer guide (you'll want to bookmark it for future reference):