Saving enough money for a down payment is a considerable challenge to many would-be homeowners. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Thousands of down payment assistance services are available around the country to help you realize your dream of buying a house, even if you don’t have enough money to put down.
How much money do I need to put down as a down payment?
While it is a common belief that a 20% down payment is required to purchase a house, this is not the case, particularly for first-time buyers. The majority of first-time homebuyers put down just 6% or less. Even better, you don’t have to come up with all of those funds on your own because down payment assistance services are available.
What is down payment assistance, and how does it work?
Down payment aid is money provided to homebuyers to help them pay for some or all of their down payment. More than 2,300 of these services are available throughout the country from various outlets, including federal, state, county, and local government departments, charities, and employers.
Down payment assistance will take the form of a grant that you will never have to repay – essentially, free money to help you become a homeowner. Typically, the funds are provided in the form of a low-interest or no-interest second mortgage loan. In certain situations, you will only have to repay the loan after you have sold your house. When you’ve stayed in the house for a certain amount of time, the loan will be forgiven.
First-time homebuyers aren’t the only ones who will benefit from down payment assistance.
Although first-time buyers are frequently identified with homeownership services, there are several options available for repeat buyers and even existing homeowners looking to purchase a new home. In reality, only 41% of homeownership programs have a provision for first-time homebuyers. It’s also worth noting that a first-time homebuyer is someone who hasn’t owned a home in the previous three years. You’re a first-time homebuyer again if you’ve been renting for the past four years.
Who is qualified for help with a down payment?
There are several different types of down payment assistance services available. Veterans, first responders, first-time homebuyers, students, and others will all benefit from these services. The specific criteria can vary depending on where you live and what services are available; however, the following are the most common eligibility requirements:
- A qualifying credit score, usually in the 620-680 range or higher, is required.
- You must meet such income standards, which differ and can be very generous.
- It must be your primary residence when you buy a home.
- Your mortgage payment will be reduced to a certain amount of your gross income when combined with other debts.
- You’ll almost certainly need to take a homebuyer education course.
If you think you’ll qualify for a down payment assistance program or not, it’s always a good idea to look into what’s available and apply – you may be eligible for more than you think.
Is getting help with a down payment going to limit my mortgage options?
You’ll need to borrow from a provider who participates in the program if you want down payment assistance. However, in addition to government-backed loans, such licensed lenders typically offer a wide range of traditional loans (VA, USDA, or FHA loans). You’ll have the freedom to select the best mortgage choice for you once you’ve been accepted for a down payment assistance program.
How can I get assistance with a down payment?
Your Houston Premium Homes real estate agent is your trusted advisor and can recommend a mortgage loan specialist and will relieve you of the burden by handling all the people and moving parts to ensure you get the results you want. Houston Premium Homes Realty Group is a one-stop-shop real estate business and is just part of the reason why so much care and attention is emphasized with each and every client.