Are you ready to live the American dream by owning your own home but are held back by your ability to come up with a down payment in order to qualify for a mortgage? Most lenders require a ten percent or larger down payment before they will write a mortgage. The majority of home buyers can afford a mortgage payment but have difficulty coming up with the funds that are needed for the down payment and closing costs on the home. Fortunately, there is assistance out there that can help you with this down payment so that you can get in the home of your dreams. Your REALTOR® is a great source to help you understand how this assistance works and also to guide you through the process of applying for and receiving down payment assistance.
Down payment assistance can be in the form of a gift or a grant. There are programs at the local, state and federal level that can help would-be homeowners make the final step into home ownership by helping them obtain a gift or grant for down payment assistance. Most of these programs are only for first-time home buyers or someone who has not owned a home within the past three years. These tips will help you expedite the process of applying for down payment assistance to buy a home.
- Obtain a copy of your credit report. You need not have perfect credit to qualify for assistance, although many programs do use your FICO score to determine eligibility.
- Have your tax returns for the last three years in order. This allows the program to establish your employment history and earnings record. Be sure that your W-2s, 1099s and other forms are attached.
- Search for or work with your REALTOR® to find the programs that you may qualify for. Oftentimes, it will be a local housing authority that administers the program, although there are other not-for-profit programs that you might qualify for.
- If you qualify for assistance with your down payment, the program will provide you with a certificate that states the allotted amount of assistance that you are eligible for. The organization providing the down payment assistance will also provide you with a list of approved lenders that you can use when applying for your mortgage loan. The lender will review all of your information, including your down payment assistance certificate, and determine if they are able to approve you for a loan.
- After you have been approved for both your down payment assistance and your mortgage, you`re ready to start looking at properties that interest you. Always work with a licensed REALTOR® to find homes that are within your price range.
We are standing by and ready to help you find the home of your dreams. If you have questions about finding a home, down payment assistance, being approved for a mortgage loan, or buying a home, give us a call now!