The program provides down payment and closing costs assistance to income-eligible applicants in the form of a zero-interest, deferred second mortgage, with the maximum loan amount being $7,500. This can be used in conjunction with the program’s 4 percent first mortgage exclusively.

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Escambia County Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance

Financial Assistance for Homebuyers in Florida

Florida’s Escambia Housing Finance Authority County established the Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance Program in order to help individuals achieve their goals of homeownership. The program helps potential homebuyers pay the heavy, upfront costs associated with mortgage transactions, such as the down payment and closing costs.

Available Assistance
The program provides down payment and closing costs assistance to income-eligible applicants in the form of a zero-interest, deferred second mortgage, with the maximum loan amount being $7,500. This can be used in conjunction with the program’s 4 percent first mortgage exclusively. The second mortgage is non-amortizing, but repayment is due when the first mortgage is satisfied or upon sale, transfer, rental or disposition of the property. Additionally, the program provides up to 100 percent of the homebuyer’s cash to close with an FHA first mortgage can provide (as long as there is no cash back to the borrower).

Eligibility Requirements
To be considered eligible for the Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance Program, borrowers must be first-time homebuyer; those who have owned a principal residence during the past three years do not qualify. However, this does not apply to qualified veterans and homebuyers purchasing in a designated targeted area. Borrowers’ annual household income must fall within program limits (shown below) and a minimum credit score of 640 is required for Conventional, FHA, USA-RD and VA Loans to participate.

Property Guidelines
Any home being purchased with the aid of program funds must serve as the borrower’s primary residence. Eligible property types include attached or detached single family homes, condominiums, townhomes or PUDs, and must be located within Alachua, Bradford, Escambia, Gadsden, Indian River, Leon, Marion, Martin, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, St. Lucie, Wakulla, or Walton Counties. The total purchase price of a home within Escambia County may not exceed the program’s purchase price limits: $310,211 for homes in Target Areas, and $253,809 for those in
Non-Target Areas.

Homebuyer Education
Additionally, at least one qualified borrower on the application is required to complete and homeownership education course.

Income Limits
Household income is defined as all income received by household members (18 years or older) who will be living in the home, even if they are not on the mortgage.

1 or 2 person households in Non-Target Area: $62,000
3 or more person households in Non-Target Area: $71,300

1 or 2 person households in Target Area: $74,400
3 or more person households in Target Area: $86,800

(Note: These figures were accurate at the time of publication and may no longer be current - visit the program website for updated information.)

Down Payment Grants in Florida

Broward County recognizes that many individuals who can afford monthly mortgage payments don't have the required down payment for a home. The Broward County’s Homebuyer Purchase Assistance Program helps potential homebuyers overcome this hurdle by offering down payment assistance.

The program provides down payment and closing costs assistance to income-eligible applicants in the form of a zero-interest, deferred second mortgage, with the maximum loan amount being $7,500. This can be used in conjunction with the program’s 4 percent first mortgage exclusively.

The Housing Finance Authority of Hillsborough County offers the Hillsborough First with Hardest Hit Fund (HHF) Down Payment Assistance Program. The program is meant to help first-time homebuyers who do not have enough money saved for hefty down payments and closing costs.

Florida’s Orange County residents can take advantage the Down Payment Assistance Program, which provides funding to income-eligible first-time homebuyers to help them purchase a new or existing home. These funds are to be put toward paying qualified closing costs and the down payment associated with a mortgage transaction.

The City of Palm Bay in Florida established the HOME Down Payment Assistance Program, which is designed to help income-eligible applicants with down payment and closing cost assistance to purchase their first home, and rehabilitation, if needed. 

The State Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP) Program in Charlotte County provides income-eligible applicants up to 10 percent of the purchase price (a maximum award of $15,000), in the form of a zero-interest loan.

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