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First-Time Homebuyer Programs: Find Down Payment Assistance

Posted by Martin Archacki on Friday, September 11th, 2015 at 12:08pm.

Buying a home for the first time can be a daunting, yet rewarding experience. Fortunately, there are existing first-time home buyer programs that provide financial assistance for various needs and circumstances.

Whether you are looking for a loan, down payment assistance, or building from the ground up, there are many federal, state and local agencies that have programs in place that specifically help and are designed for first-time homebuyers.

Federal Programs for First-Time Homebuyers

FHA Loans

FHA loans are property loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration (as part of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – HUD), for low-income borrowers or those with credit scores as low as 580.

With FHA loans, a down payment on a home can be as low as 3.5% of the final purchase price. FHA loans also commonly have a lower interest rates, and could possibly be structured to assist you with closing costs, however, there are often caps on how much you can borrow, and the guidelines are often more strict than other available assistance programs. In addition, The Zero Down Payment Act protects qualified FHA insured families from having to provide a down payment on their first homes as well.

Habitat for Humanity

A non-profit, Christian (nondenominational) organization, Habitat for Humanity, assists low-income families and/or individuals with purchasing and building homes. Recipients are chosen according to their need, their ability to work for Habitat for Humanity in the future, and their capability to repay their no-profit, no-interest mortgage. Mortgages of varying lengths are available for first-time homebuyers, as well.

VA Programs

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Home Guaranty Service is a long-term assistance program specifically designed for military veterans, active members of U.S. armed services, and widows or widowers of veterans. This is a widely used form of private-lending for first-time homeowners assistance, and, in some instances, qualifies the borrower for a zero percent down payment.

U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development Housing & Community Facilities Program

Farmers or first-time buyers looking for homes in rural areas can gain financial assistance with this program. The program can provide as much as a 90% loan guarantee to lenders, and even includes repairs and home rehabilitation, refinancing, energy efficiency incentives, and property management assistance.

Georgia First-Time Homebuyers Programs

Georgia Dream Homeownership Program

This state sponsored program offers qualifying first-time homebuyers down payment assistance. There are price caps on qualifying homes, and all borrowers must meet certain income criteria.

HOME Atlanta 4.0

HOME Atlanta 4.0 offers a long-term fixed interest rate with a forgivable 5% grant which in turn helps with both the down payment and closing costs for first-time home buyers. After closing, the grant is forgiven. This program requires a sturdy credit score of 640, a 45% debt-to-income ratio, and a partial ($1500) payment on closing costs.

Atlanta Affordable Homeownership Program (AAHOP)

The Atlanta Affordable Homeownership Program (AAHOP) gives home buyers two options. The first option allows for $10,000 towards the down payment and/or closing cost. After five years of living in the home, the money is fully forgivable. The second option doubles the price to $20,000, which is forgivable after ten years of living in the home.

Those looking to see which Atlanta-based first-time homebuyer assistance programs they qualify for can visit today.

If you'd like more information on buying your first home and the programs available to first-time home buyers, contact The Atlanta Homes. We have years of experience helping first-time buyers just like yourself!



8 Responses to "First-Time Homebuyer Programs: Find Down Payment Assistance"

Trina Johnson wrote: I make 85k but don't have enough saved for downpayment. I want to invest the $1500 rent into a home. The home will be >$230k. I plan to live in that home for more than 10 years. The new home will be in around the Alpharetta area. I have excellent credit. I can afford roughly $10000 in downpayment. I do not want PMI. What are my options regarding grants, down-payment assistance, 0% interest rate second mortgages, and the different programs i've come across such as Home Atlanta, National homebuyers fund platinum program, federal home loan bank grant, atlanta, affordable homeownership progra, etc?

Posted on Friday, October 2nd, 2015 at 9:51am.

Martin Archacki wrote: @ Trina I sent you an email with additional information and I will have one of our proffered lenders reach out to you as well. I hope that we will be able to help you.

Posted on Friday, October 2nd, 2015 at 1:21pm.

Diana wrote: I am purchasing a home using my VA loan and would like to see if there are any grants available?

Posted on Thursday, January 14th, 2016 at 9:45pm.

Martin Archacki wrote: @ Diana, a majority of VA loans will allow you to fiance 100% of your purchase. There are some specific restrictions but it might be that you don't need any down payment assistance. I will email you in a few minutes with some additional ideas.

Posted on Friday, January 15th, 2016 at 12:50pm.

Trent Williams wrote: I had a mishap with my student loans when I first moved to Atlanta. I've straightened things out for the most part and am now looking for homes. Who would be the best person to talk to about the downpayment assistance being offered?

Posted on Tuesday, January 31st, 2017 at 12:54am.

Inez Morgan wrote: @Trent, I just sent you an email with one of our preferred lenders contact information. I will also have them reach out to you.

Posted on Tuesday, January 31st, 2017 at 9:04am.

Nikki wrote: My credit is near the mid 700's. I owe alot in student loans. I want a townhome but dont know where to start? Who do I call to help me? I am a single parent of 1 with income of less than $40k. I dont want to be hit with closing cost or pay little closing cost and I can possibly can put $2k for down payment. What are my options for me? Where do I start?

Posted on Wednesday, February 1st, 2017 at 2:58pm.

Inez Morgan wrote: @Nikki, I just sent you an email also with our prefered lenders information. I highly recommend speaking with them first. There are a lot of great first time home buyer programs out there and they will be able to guide you to which programs you will qualify for.

Posted on Thursday, February 2nd, 2017 at 8:20am.

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