Home Buying Assistance Program
General Real Estate, Lending
August 25, 2015
Currently, there are many people across Arizona with steady jobs and good credit, but can’t afford a down payment on a new home. A new program called Home Plus operated by the Arizona Housing Finance Authority (AzHFA), is designed specifically to help people that fit into this category to become homeowners. This new program was implemented in Maricopa County in October 2014 with great success.
Home Plus is a homebuyer assistance program providing down payment and closing cost assistance combined with a 30-year fixed rate mortgage for creditworthy homebuyers. The program has been in existence for more than a decade in 13 of Arizona’s 15 rural counties. This loan program is currently not available in Pima County. So far, the AzHFA has assisted about 1,400 families by providing more than $1.7 million in down payment assistant grants.
“With the escalating increase in rents, many creditworthy renters are finding it more difficult to save for a down payment,” says AzHFA Homeownership Programs Administrator Dirk Swift. “With the Home Plus program this obstacle has been removed. Home Plus gives qualified renters a pathway to homeownership with a non-repayable down payment assistance grant.”
The Home Plus program provides an attractive 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with a down payment assistance (DPA) grant to qualifying homebuyers purchasing a primary residence that they intend to occupy. The DPA is provided as a non-repayable grant that can be used for the down payment and closing costs, equal to four percent of the initial principal balance of the mortgage loan. Qualified U.S. military personnel and veterans may receive an additional one percent of DPA for a total of five percent of the mortgage amount. The DPA is only available in conjunction with a Home Plus loan and is funded by AzHFA at the mortgage loan closing. Home Plus users do not need to be first-time buyers.
The Home Plus program is available to homebuyers with an annual household income of less than $88,340, purchasing homes under $353,360. First-time and boomerang homebuyers should find the program especially helpful. Homebuyers must work through an AzHFA-approved and participating lenders to obtain a Fannie Mae HFA Preferred, 30-year fixed mortgage. AzHFA raises funds for its initiative in the national capital markets forming partnerships with banking and lending institutions to facilitate the Home Plus program throughout the state of Arizona.
For real estate agents, this can be an effective option for potential buyers that want to buy a home and feel that can’t afford it.