Home buying is an important milestone in your life, more so if you are a first time buyer. Buying a home is often marked with lengthy paperwork and complicated calculations. Most people opt for some kind of financial assistance or government grants to materialize their dream of buying a home. While most people struggle to amass the requisite amount for the down payment, very few actually know that there are several grants available that can help you out. The eligibility criteria for these differ and are mostly applicable for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) funded projects.
List of Down Payment Assistance Grants
American Family Funds
The Dove Foundation, which is run by the American Family Funds (AFF), is a non-profit charitable organization. It offers down payment assistance to all eligible home buyers. Under this scheme, you first need to get your FHA home loan approved as soon as you finalize the property. Next, you need to notify your loan officer, who then applies for assistance under AFF on your behalf.
NEHEMIAH offers down payment assistance to any one who becomes eligible for an approved FHA loan. So far, NEHEMIAH has helped about a quarter million Americans to materialize their dream. The financial assistance provided by NEHEMIAH is about 6% of the final contract price or the closing deal of the house.
AmeriDream offers gift funds to all eligible applicants. The value of these gift funds is about 10% of the purchase price of the house. The most attractive part of this scheme is that you need not return the gift fund amount. However, it is mandatory for the home buyer to return any amount that has not been paid towards the down payment or closing cost of the home. The home buyer should also return the funds if the deal does not take place before the scheduled closing date.
Family Home Providers
Family Home Providers is yet another non-profit housing finance assistance company which has several grants for home buying and its down payment for families with steady income and good credit score. Under this plan, people who have qualified for FHA approved loan can claim up to 3% of the final contract price.
Grant America is a non-profit down payment assistance program run by Penobscot Indian Tribal Nation. It is HUD approved plan and offers up to USD 34,000 as down payment assistance funds. The offer is even extended to those living outside the tribal jurisdiction.
Housing Action Resource Trust
Housing Action Resource Trust (HART) offers down payment assistance to home buyers who become eligible for FHA funds under 'first mortgage' loans. This does not necessarily imply first time home buyer grants only. People who are applying for their first home mortgage or home equity also become eligible for this loan scheme.
Future Home Assistance
Future Home Assistance is a non-profit charitable organization with a motto that people who dream of buying homes should not be deterred from realizing their dream just due to lack of funds for down payment. This organization offers up to 6% of final contract deal or closing cost of the house, as gift funds.
Partners in Charity
Partners in Charity (PIC) is a non-profit group offering financial assistance for single family homes, condominiums, and multi-unit properties. The prerequisite for this program is an pre-approved home loan by FHA.
Newsong is a finance assistance plan for commercial and housing projects. Anyone who qualifies for a FHA loan also becomes eligible for Newsong. There are no strict requirements regarding income or credit score of the applicants.
Responsible Home Ownership
The Responsible Home Ownership program is operated through a non-profit organization named Community Housing and Development Corporation. Down payment assistance is provided to low income families with steady income and good credit.
The Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 has eliminated seller funded down payment assistance plans. Prior to this act, the seller could contribute up to 6% of the closing price of FHA funded houses. Owing to the timely amendments and changes in the housing acts, it is recommended that you check the qualifications and eligibility criteria for the grants, before applying.