First-Time Homebuyer Assistance Programs for 2024 in Georgia

Last Updated on August 23, 2023 by Hannah Stevens

Mortgage Assistance for Homebuyers in Georgia

Consumer Credit Counseling Service First Time Home Buyer Workshop

The Consumer Credit Counseling Service (CCCS) offers a free, one-on-one service, first-time home buying counseling sessions. This is an effort to help them to be more informed and knowledgeable about the mortgage process. They also teach the steps involved in owning a house. These housing counselors also provide a budget and credit report analysis to help probable homebuyers create a plan to achieve their goals of homeownership.

Available Assistance

CCCS offers a free 8-hour First Time Home Buyer Workshop. The workshop covers topics such as financing options, pre-qualifying to mortgage, down payment assistance programs, and working alongside realtors. It also addresses home inspections, homeowner’s insurance, closing a loan transaction, fair housing, and making an offering on a house.

Participants who are successful receive certificates from the City of Savannah’s DreamMaker, GA Dream, and SC Housing down payment assistance programs.

Augusta Homeownership Assistance Program

Augusta’s Homeownership Assistance Program helps first-time homebuyers pay down their mortgage upfront.

Available Assistance 

Eligible applicants can receive down payment assistance in the form deferred-payment, lower-interest loans. Housing and Community Development (HCD), provides the closing cost or down payment (not exceeding $5,000). Additionally, if the borrower resides in the home for five years, the loan amount will be forgiven.

Eligibility Requirements 

Augusta’s Homeownership Program is only open to first-time homebuyers, displaced homemakers, and single parents. They must earn an annual income of at least 80% of the area median income. However, only primary residences are eligible.

Income Limits 

  • 1-person household: $35,200 
  • 2-person household: $40,200 
  • 3-person household: $45,250 
  • 4-person household: $50,250 
  • 5-person household: $54,300 
  • 6-person household: $58,300 
  • 7-person household: $62,350 
  • 8-person household: $66,350 

Maximum Purchase Price Limit 

Existing homes 
  • 1-unit: $152,000 
  • 2-unit: $195,000 
  • 3-unit: $236,000 
  • 4-unit: $292,000 

Unadjusted median value: 160,000 

New Homes 
  • 1-unit: $227,000 
  • 2-unit: $291,000 
  • 3-unit: $352,000 
  • 4-unit: $436,000 

Unadjusted median value: 239,000 

Georgia Dream Homeownership Program

The Georgia Dream Homeownership Program is a program administered by the Department of Community Affairs in Georgia. It helps people from certain counties to finance their new homes. The program provides down payment assistance and first mortgage loans to help homebuyers get decent housing.

Homebuyers who are eligible for the program can receive a down payment assistance up to $5,000 for any amount. Borrowers can also apply to:

  • Down Payment Assistance for Protectors
  • Educators and Health Care Workers (PEN)
  • Down Payment Assistance for Families with Disabilities (CHOICE)

Eligibility Requirements

Georgia Dream applicants must be interested in a property in the area and have not owned a home within the last three years to be eligible. They must also have a minimum of $1,000 in capital, meet specific income and purchase price limits. All applicants to Georgia Dream Loans must also complete Homebuyer Counseling. Borrowers can also choose to attend a workshop or individual counseling sessions on home buying or an online course via E-Home America.

Income Limits

The area in which you buy a home will affect your income and the home’s sales price. However, your household income for one or more people cannot exceed $69,000 (1-2 persons), $79,500 (3 or more persons), or the house price cannot exceed the price of $250,000 if the property is located in one of these counties: Barrow, Bartow, Carroll, Cherokee. Cobb. Coweta. Dawson. DeKalb. Douglas. Fayette. Forsyth. Fulton. Gwinnett. Heard. Henry. Jasper. Newton. Pickens. Rockdale. Spalding. Walton.

Your household income cannot be higher than $59,500 for one to two persons, or $68,500 for three or more persons, and the home sales price cannot exceed $200,000, if your home county is not listed above.

Homestretch Down Payment Assistance Program

A 5-year deferred payment loan without interest is available to help with down payment. The lien can be canceled as long as the homeowner is the primary resident at the maturity date of security deed. Additionally, there are no payments are required.

Available Assistance:

First-time homebuyers can receive up to $7500 through the Homestretch Down Payment Assistance Program of Gwinnett County. This assistance comes in the form of a zero-interest, 5-year loan with deferred payment. Eventually, the principal will be reduced by 20% each year starting on the anniversary of the security document.

Eligibility Requirements:

All applicants must meet the requirements to be eligible for the Homestretch Down Payment Assistance Program. First-time homebuyers who have an annual household income below 80 percent of the area median are eligible for the program (limits listed below). The applicants must have a minimum credit score of 640 and a ratio of less than 43 percent for their debt to income. The applicants must also complete an 8-hour pre-purchase class for homebuyers from a HUD approved counseling agency.

Property Guidelines:

The Homestretch Program requires that any property purchased must be the applicant’s primary residence. It must also be located in Gwinnett County. The program’s maximum price limits for eligible property include single-family detached or townhomes, which are limited to $165,000 for existing homes and $228,000 for new construction. After determining eligibility, the Community Development office authorizes Uniform Property Condition Standards inspections, which are paid for by the Homestretch Program. The seller or buyer can choose to pay for repairs if the home fails inspection.

Income Limits:

  • 1 person household: $39,050
  • 2 person household: $44,600
  • 3 person household: $50,200
  • 4 person household: $55,750
  • 5 person household: $60,250
  • 6 person household: $64,700
  • 7 person household: $69,150
  • 8 person household: $73,600

This programme similar to the down payment First-Time Homebuyer Assistance Programs in Florida.

Neighborhood Works Columbus

Neighborhood Works Columbus provides homebuyers with a down payment assistance program. This program offers a fixed amount of money to qualified buyers to help them pay down their home payments.

Available Assistance 

Two separate DPA programs are offered by Neighborhood Works Columbus to applicants who meet the eligibility requirements: 

  • NeighborWorks Columbus FHLB Atlanta DPA Program – This program provides down payment assistance of $7,500 to $10,000 for households with annual incomes below 80% of the area median income.
  • Federal HOME program – This program offers homebuyer assistance based on the applicant’s financial need. The amounts will vary by jurisdiction. The annual household income must not exceed 80% of the area’s median income to be eligible for the program. NeighborWorks Columbus was selected to offer home sales and down payment assistance in Columbus.

Income Limits:  

  • 1-person household: $34,900 
  • 2-person household: $39,900 
  • 3-person household: $44,900 
  • 4-person household: $49,850 
  • 5-person household: $53,850 
  • 6-person household: $57,850 
  • 7-person household: $61,850 
  • 8-person household: $65,850 

Savannah Dream Maker Home Buyer Assistance Program

Savannah’s Housing & Neighborhood Services Department offers various levels of down payment assistance for eligible applicants through the Dream Maker programs.

Available Assistance 

The Dream Maker Home Buying Assistance Program provides affordable loans to help with down payments, closing costs, and other expenses. The amount of assistance depends on where the house is located and the type of construction.

Dream Maker 1 

  • Deferred repayments up to $5,000, payable upon demise, refinance or transfer of title
  • The borrower must contribute $1,000 towards the purchase
  • The home must not be in the Target Neighborhoods
  • You must locate your property within the City limits

Dream Maker 2 

  • Deferred repayments up to $7,500, payable upon transfer of title or refinance or demise
  • The borrower must contribute $1,000 towards the purchase
  • You must locate your property within the CDBG communities

Dream Maker 3 

  • Savannah Gardens (only). – Prices up to $60,000* for two-story homes. Prices up to $40,000 for one-story homes.
  • Urban Redevelopment Areas – Up to $30,000
  • CDBG Neighborhoods – Up to $20,000
  • This tier permits new construction in areas of urban redevelopment or CDBG. HNSD must approve the property before construction can begin.
  • Deferred 30-year term payable on transfer of title, refinance or death
  • The borrower must contribute $1,000 towards the purchase

We DeKalb DPA Program

As an economic incentive, the Decide DeKalb Development Authority created the WE DeKalb Program to attract and retain top talent in Atlanta by making homeownership more affordable in DeKalb County.

Available Assistance 

Qualified applicants who are interested in buying or refinancing a DeKalb County home can receive down payment assistance through the WE DeKalb program. This assistance is available in three, four, or five percent depending on the loan type. This grant is available to all qualified homebuyers in DeKalb County.

Eligibility Requirements 

All applicants must meet income requirements to be eligible for the WE DeKalb Program. For all households, the maximum income limit for FHA or VA loans is $111 580. The maximum qualifying income for conventional Freddie Mac Advantage loans is $63,360. Credit scores must be within the program’s limits.

  • FHA and Freddie Mac loans will have a maximum DTI of 50% if they have a minimum 680 FICO.
  • FHA, VA, and Freddie Mac loans will have a maximum DTI ratio (45%)

Are you interested in the First-Time Homebuyer Assistance Programs in Hawaii?