First Time Home Buyer Grants
Buying a home is easily one of the most exciting and stressful times in a young person’s life. Ideally, a home is a long term investment, giving a family roots in a community, and settling them into the next phase of their lives. To help with this process, many governmental and nonprofit programs offer first time home buyer grants.Unlike loans, these grants do not have to be paid back, taking a great deal of stress out of the home buying process.
Federal Grant Programs
Though the US Department of Homes and Urban Development offers few programs directly to first time home buyers, it does funnel a great deal of money through state programs for precisely this purpose. These programs can help cover the closing costs, reduce the down payment, lower the initial purchasing price, and provide easy ways approval for the mortgage with housing loans through the Federal Housing Administration or approved banks. There are also various HUD sponsored homes with lowered prices already locked in available at HUD.gov and are searchable by state. For specific grants, home buyers must register at grants.gov and see which grants they qualify for.
Good Neighbor Next Door
One great grant program is targeted at specific members of the community. Because the entire community benefits from the addition of strong teachers, emergency workers, firefighters and law enforcement, such individuals can apply for federal housing assistance through the HUD’s Good Neighbor Next Door grant program. Homes for such individuals are offered through HUD at 50% off the original listing price. Those who take advantage of the program are required to stay in their homes for at least 36 months and must be currently employed in one of the mentioned occupations.
The US Department of Homes and Urban Development also offers heavily reduced prices on homes through its Dollar Homes program. This program is run through state and local housing authorities and is targeted at bringing in home owners to certain areas of the community in need of revitalization. The homes are acquired through the foreclosure process; if they languish on the market for more than six months, they are then offered to low and middle income families at the cost of only $1. The program is limited to only a handful of states, though, and can be found at the HUD website.
State Based Programs
An easier way to find specific grants for first time home buyer is to go through various state based programs. Every state in America has its own set of home buyer programs, designed to offset various costs and lower mortgage rates. For instance, the California Housing Finance Agency offers easy loans for buyers in targeted designated areas, while the California Department of Housing and Community Development offers several different grants that can completely eliminate closing costs or significantly lower the required initial deposit. Visit the US HUD website for a full listing of states.
First time home buyer grants can be a great way for new families to invest in a starter home, setting themselves up for a more stable financial future. By using any of these programs, families will have an easier time making their initial deposits, meeting mortgage requirements, and closing on the home they’ve always dreamed of.