Down payment assistance (DPA) programs are initiatives to give away cash grants, cheap loans, and tax breaks to U.S. home buyers. Most are government-backed, some are community-backed.
Because of DPAs, today’s home buyers don’t need big down payments to buy a house. Cash help is often available within your local market.
There’s no cost to apply for down payment assistance programs, and they exist in five varieties.
Depending on where you live, you might have access to some, or all, of the following:
- Cash grants for making a down payment on a home
- No-interest loans for making a down payment on a home
- Official interest rate reductions for your mortgage loan
- Income tax reductions from your state and federal governments
- Direct reimbursement for your mortgage closing costs
Down payment assistance programs are available to first-time buyers and repeat home buyers, too. Often, though, the hardest part of qualifying for down payment assistance is knowing that a program exists for you.
DPAs are typically administered on the local level and without a marketing budget. As a result, program awareness levels with the public are often between low and none, and you can’t get the money if you don’t know to apply.
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