Employers Gain A Lot By Participating
If you’re an employee in an organization that’s considering an EAH program, support the cause. These programs can elevate the work/life balance for a government employee. They also can help with the retention of good employees.
EAH programs offer tax credits, cut down on emissions, and help build better communities. You can reduce commute times for employees through an EAH program. This may help strengthen other local businesses at the same time.
Also, EAH programs may cut down on the number of foreclosed properties. This is because they encourage employees to live near their workplace.
Home Renovation Loan Programs
Here are a few programs that allow you to buy more home for your money.
The Energy Efficient Mortgage program extends your borrowing power when you buy a home with energy-saving improvements or upgrade a homes green features. If you qualify for a home loan, you can add the EEM benefit to your regular mortgage. It doesnt require a new appraisal or affect the amount of your down payment. The program simply allows your lender the flexibility to extend loan limits for energy efficiency improvements.
There are also FHA 203 loans, designed for buyers who want to tackle a fixer-upper. This special FHA-backed loan considers what the value of the property will be after improvements and allows you to borrow the funds to complete the project as part of your main mortgage.
These loan programs are designed for buyers who want to tackle a fixer-upper.
The CHOICERenovation loan is a conventional loan program through Freddie Mac that allows you to finance the purchase of a home and the cost of improvements, too, with low down payments.
HomeStyle from Fannie Mae is another conventional loan option for purchase-and-remodel projects. A 3% down payment is available to first-time home buyers.
» MORE: Use our mortgage calculator to find out your monthly mortgage payment.
Good Neighbor Next Door: Best For Buyers Employed In Public Service
The Good Neighbor Next Door program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development , provides housing aid for law enforcement officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians and pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade teachers. Through the program, borrowers can receive 50 percent off a home in a revitalization area, provided they live in the home for at least three years. You can search for properties available in your state on the programs website.
- Strengths: 50 percent discount on list price
- Weaknesses: Limited to borrowers in certain public service professions limited properties longer-term commitment required
Read more about Good Neighbor Next Door.
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Make Predictable Monthly Payments
When you’re a renter, you’re at the mercy of a landlord. You might see your rent prices go up each year. And you won’t be building equity in the process.
As a homeowner, you have more control over how you map out the monthly payments. Whether you own a small home in the center of town or lakeside property, you always will know what your mortgage payment is. You may even be able to work with your lender to adjust it as rates change.
Are There Any State Tax Credits For First
While the first-time homebuyer tax credit was eliminated at the federal level in 2010, several states still offer state tax credits for first-time homebuyers. Additionally, some municipalities and counties offer property tax reductions for first-time homebuyers in their first year. Check with a local tax professional to see what you may be eligible for in your area.
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Finding The Right Home Buyer Grants
The above list is by no means complete rather, it’s a start. New assistance programs are forming all the time while others have expired or run their course after meeting a short-term need.
At the same time, while conducting your search for assistance, keep your guard up for websites or for-profit companies that promise to help you find any kind of funding you need for a small fee. Many of these organizations have names that imply an association or direct relationship with the U.S. government, when there’s no connection whatsoever. So, steer clear!
Again, your best route for seeking and finding grants to further your housing quest is to first work with professionals who have their feet firmly embedded on the ground in the areas where you want to live. Start with your local lender or your city’s housing department. They should be knowledgeable about the current housing assistance programs for which you may be eligible.
Be persistent. While it’s true there are no free lunches, sometimes there is assistance with no obligation to pay back assuming certain requirements are met for those diligent and determined enough to go looking for it.
What Are Va Loans
The Department of Veterans Affairs oversees VA loans. If you served in the military or are a military spouse, you may qualify for one of these loans. Private lenders handle VA loans, but the VA guarantees them.
VA loans permit a lot of flexibility, even if you don’t have a great credit score or savings. After all, this program began in 1944 to help servicemen returning from World War II. These soldiers did not have enough saved money to buy homes.
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Usda Loans Aren’t Just For Farmers
The U.S. Department of Agriculture coordinates loans, as well. USDA loans are for those in the low to moderate-income bracket. You’ll want to check the income limits in your area since the USDA adjusts them by region.
With USDA loans, you’ll need to live in a designated suburban or rural area. The USDA website will help you see if you’re in a qualifying area. The USDA backs these loans, but you’ll seek them out through a private lender.
You’ll need to demonstrate the ability to repay loans based on your history over the past year. You should have a reliable income and meet debt-to-income requirements for your lender.
You may be able to take advantage of a 0% down option through these loans. And you’ll have a low-interest rate for your mortgage!
Get Help With Your Home Purchase
Buying your first home can be challenging, especially when it comes to getting approved for a mortgage and coming up with the down payment.
Thankfully, Uncle Sam has first-time home buyer government programs that can make it easier to get into your new home.
Dig deeper and find out about various loan options, state-run mortgage programs, down payment assistance, and other resources available to eligible buyers.
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Equity And Income Requirements
Home mortgage loan pricing is determined by the lender in two ways, and both methods are based on the creditworthiness of the borrower. In addition to checking your FICO score from the three major credit bureaus, lenders will calculate the loan-to-value ratio and the debt-service coverage ratio to determine the amount that theyre willing to loan to you, plus the interest rate.
LTV is the amount of actual or implied equity that is available in the collateral being borrowed against. For home purchases, LTV is determined by dividing the loan amount by the purchase price of the home. Lenders assume that the more money you are putting up , the less likely you are to default on the loan. The higher the LTV, the greater the risk of default, so lenders will charge more.
For this reason, you should include any type of qualifying income that you can when negotiating with a mortgage lender. Sometimes an extra part-time job or other income-generating business can make the difference between qualifying or not qualifying for a loan, or in receiving the best possible rate. A mortgage calculator can show you the impact of different rates on your monthly payment.
Charitable Or Nonprofit First
You might qualify for charitable or nonprofit assistance if you have low to moderate income. Charities and nonprofits are non-government organizations that can offer you educational and financial resources when you buy a home. Nonprofits usually have income qualifications that dictate who can get help.
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State And Local First
Many states and municipalities offer first-time homebuyer grants and low-interest mortgage programs. Check your states housing finance authority website or contact a real estate agent or local HUD-approved housing counseling agency to learn more about first-time homebuyer loans in your area.
- Strengths: Down payment and closing cost assistance lower-interest mortgages
- Weaknesses: Income limits buyer education course usually required
Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac Loans
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are government-sponsored enterprises that buy loans from lenders, package them into mortgage-backed securities, and use the sale of the investment to offer lower interest rates for more Americans. A loan from either requires a minimum 3% down payment, a minimum 620 credit score , and a strong credit history.
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How To Receive Your Down Payment Grant
Home buyers don’t have to take action to collect their down payment grants. Mortgage lenders will do it for you, automatically. All you have to do is buy a home, show up at closing, and the money will be there waiting for you.
Home buyers using the program are required to participate in home purchase counseling from a government-approved counselor.
Most programs can be completed in 2 hours.
Deduct The Interest On Your Mortgage During Tax Time
Did you know that you can deduct the interest you pay on your home’s mortgage? Yes, you can trim your taxable income by doing this simple step when you fill out your taxes.
Remember to deduct interest payments. This could mean you pay less to the government and get a bigger refund check. While this isn’t a perk specific to government employees, it can help you save money as a homeowner.
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The Bottom Line For First
This isnt a law yet, so the grant money isnt currently available for home buyers.
Learn more about the Build Back Better Act.
Do you have questions about any of these programs? Feel free to reach out to us in the chat and we are happy to answer any of them for you.
Dan Green is a former mortgage loan officer and an industry expert. He’s appeared on NPR and CNBC, and in The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, and dozens of local newspapers. Dan has helped millions of first-time home buyers get educated on mortgages, real estate, and personal finance. Have mortgage questions? Ask Dan in the chat.
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Homebuyer is powered by Novus Home Mortgage, a division of Ixonia Bank, NMLS #423065. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender
Neighborhood Assistance Corporation Of America
The Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America is another nationwide nonprofit that can help you buy a home. NACA offers financially unstable households mortgage counseling and education. NACAs team members also help low-income families find lenders willing to work with them.
NACA loans have no down payment requirement or closing costs and no minimum credit score and can give you a more personalized look at potential paths to homeownership.
Like government programs, many charities and nonprofits are region-specific. HUD keeps a running list of approved nonprofits available in every state and county. You can learn more about local housing programs available to you by visiting HUDs website.
Great news! Rates are still low in 2021.
Missed your chance for historically low mortgage rates in 2020? Act now!
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Can The Government Help Me Buy A House
For many first-time home buyers, there are some real hurdles along the way. Whether its saving for a down payment and closing costs, qualifying for a mortgage loan, or simply navigating the home buying process.
Luckily, there are government programs both at the federal and state level that can help.
For many, the biggest hurdle when trying to purchase their first home is coming up with the upfront costs of a down payment. While the amount needed to put down varies depending on the type of loan, it can still be a roadblock on the journey to homeownership, says Mandie Anderson, branch manager with South Carolina-based Silverton Mortgage.
Government-backed loans are a great option for anyone who can afford a monthly payment, but wants to put less money down or has a lower credit score.
The good news is that there are numerous government loan programs and down payment assistance options designed especially for those who need a little extra help with financing. These programs can be a solution in particular for those who can afford a monthly mortgage payment but may not have a large sum of money on hand for the down payment, Anderson explains.
Government-backed loans are a great option for anyone who wants to put less money down or has a lower credit score, explains Jeff Gravelle, chief production officer at Newrez, a national mortgage lending and servicing organization.
Must Earn Income That’s Above
Eligible home buyers must earn an income that’s no more than 20 percent over the median income for a metropolitan area. For example, in Portland, Maine, where the median income is $60,000, home buyers must earn $72,000 per year or less to claim their cash down payment grant.
Note that income exceptions can be made in high-cost areas, such as New York, Los Angeles, and other cities where the cost of living is high. In high cost areas, eligible home buyers must earn an income that’s no more than 80 percent over the local median income. In San Francisco, eligible home buyers must earn $189,000 per year or less.
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Fannie Mae Homepath Ready Buyer
Fannie Mae also offers a program specifically for first-timers called the HomePath Ready Buyer Program. This first-time home buyer program is part education and part financial assistance. Buyers who complete the homeownership education by Framework and purchase a HomePath home may receive up to three percent in closing cost assistance, according to Fannie Mae. This program can be combined with the HomeReady Mortgage mentioned above.
Us Department Of Veterans Affairs Loans
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs guarantees VA loans. The VA does not make loans itself but guarantees mortgages made by qualified lenders. These guarantees allow veterans to obtain home loans with favorable terms .
In most cases, VA loans are easier to qualify for than conventional loans. Lenders generally limit the maximum VA loan to conventional mortgage loan limits. Before applying for a loan, youll need to request your eligibility from the VA. If you are accepted, the VA will issue a certificate of eligibility that you can use to apply for a loan.
In addition to these federal loan types and programs, state and local governments and agencies sponsor assistance programs to increase investment or homeownership in certain areas.
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Residential Rebates By City
Edmonton: Right now, the City of Edmonton is paying $0.40 per watt to homeowners who install solar on their homes, and this translates to the city covering about 15 percent of the cost.
Medicine Hat: Medicine Hats environmental initiative, HAT Smart, has a number of rebates that are designed to educate consumers and promote energy-efficient homes. The program is open until January 7, 2022, and it includes:
- Air conditioners: Up to $350 for an ENERGY STAR air conditioner
- Solar: $1.00 per watt when you install a solar PV system
Chenoa Fund With The Fha Program
Chenoa Funds are a first time home buyer grant offered by CBC Mortgage Agency , a federally chartered government agency in all 50 states that provides down payment assistance for low-income familes whose income is below 115% of HUDs Area Median Income .
The assistance funds come in the form of a zero-interest second mortgage in combination with an FHA-insured home loan. Borrowers making less than 115% of the median income will have the second mortgage forgiven after making 36 consecutive, on-time mortgage payments.
Chenoa Fund with FHA qualifications
- Borrowers making less than 115% of AMI assistance is forgiven
- 620 credit score needed
- Depending on your credit score, homebuyer education may be required
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$0 Down Home Loans Available
FedHome Loan Centers is your connection for affordable government programs to help you buy, sell or refinance residential real estate.
FedHome Loan Centers is comprised of a tight network of experienced Realtors®, seasoned loan specialists, knowledgeable counselors and other mortgage professionals who work together on your behalf to ensure the success of your home-buying, home-selling or home-refinance experience.
You can contact a Government Loan Specialist at FedHome Loan Centers now by calling: 877-432-LOAN
Is There A Catch
It takes an effort to obtain government help with mortgage programs. For instance, many states require qualifying candidates to take an online home buyers education course. This may include a small, out-of-pocket fee of around $99.
Where can I find more information? Our first recommendation for those interested in finding specific sources of government help would be to use the Internet. It’s rich with information and readily accessible at your fingertips! A quick web search makes it easy and painless to gain knowledge on the vast options available, like home buyer incentives and tax credits.
Take it a step further by contacting your state or county housing authority. Reach out to your local government office or city hall to track down the specific housing assistance department nearby. Engaging in face-to-face interaction will allow you to ask more detailed questions, receive more in-depth answers, overall equipping you with more comprehensive information.
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