In an effort to help families achieve their homeownership dreams, the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) of Des Moines offers individuals the Home$tart and Home$tart Plus Programs, which assist by providing down payment and closing cost assistance.

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October 19, 2018
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Home$tart and Home$tart Plus Programs

Financial Assistance for Homebuyers in Iowa

In an effort to help families achieve their homeownership dreams, the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) of Des Moines offers individuals the Home$tart and Home$tart Plus Programs, which assist by providing down payment and closing cost assistance.

Available Assistance
Individuals participating in the Home$tart Program may receive up to $7,500 in the form of a grant, while Home$tart Plus participants receive up to $15,000. These funds can be put toward covering some or all of the down payment and closing costs associated with a mortgage transaction, or the cost of property rehabilitation. Home$tart or Home$tart Plus funds may not be used to pay for moving costs. Funds are made available to members on a first-come, first-served basis, subject to availability.

Eligibility Requirements
Home$tart and Home$tart Plus are programs available to qualifying homebuyers, who fall at or under 80 percent of the area median income (limits shown below). They must meet all lender guidelines and qualify for a first-mortgage. Additionally, any first-time homebuyers participating in either program are required to complete a homebuyer education class.

Property Guidelines
Any home being purchased under the Home$tart or Home$tart Plus program must serve as the applicant’s primary residence. While there are no neighborhood restrictions, eligible properties include single-family homes, manufactured homes, condominiums, and townhomes.

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 person household: $46,050
2 person household: $52,600
3 person household: $59,200
4 person household: $65,750
5 person household: $71,050
6 person household: $76,300
7 person household: $81,550
8 person household: $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.)
 
*Seller-funded down payment programs were eliminated in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008, but States and Local government agencies are still permitted to help borrowers finance their homes with second mortgages and grants. These agencies set different requirements that a borrower needs to meet in order to qualify for the grant programs, such as property location, and purchase price and income limits.

Down Payment Grants in Iowa

The City of Cedar Rapids offers individuals down payment assistance in the form of the First Time Home Buyer Program. Funds are available on a first come, first served basis, and applications are reviewed in order. 

This program provides long-term, zero-interest loans of up to $5,000 to help cover down payment and closing costs associated with purchasing a new home. In the case of household income less than 30 percent of the area median income (AMI), individuals may also receive up to $25,000.

In an effort to assist individuals achieve their homeownership goals the Iowa Finance Authority offers the FirstHome Plus program, which provides down payment assistance to eligible first-time home buyers who are purchasing a primary residence in Iowa.

In an effort to help families achieve their homeownership dreams, the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) of Des Moines offers individuals the Home$tart and Home$tart Plus Programs, which assist by providing down payment and closing cost assistance.

The Waterloo Down Payment Assistance Program provides applicants with assistance funds via a forgivable, second mortgage. If an applicant chooses to sell the home in under five years, the loan amount is recaptured and used to replenish the loan fund.

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