Grants for First Time Home Buyers

Last Updated on August 24, 2023 by Hannah Stevens

Grants for First-Time Home Buyers are a great help for individuals purchasing a home for the first time. Various grants provide funding for either down payments or closing costs which would help homebuyers taper down the expenses at an affordable price. Some grants provide public housing for low-income individuals. It will help them settle into a new home without worrying about paying for it. In this article, I will discuss the following grants available for first-time homebuyers. 

How do first-time homebuyer grants work?

As a first-time homebuyer, you’ll have numerous possibilities for financial assistance, but grants differ from other types of assistance in one important way. You never have to repay the money. A grant can help you pay for a down payment on a property as well as the closing charges you’ll have to pay before you move in. Some grant programs are also accessible to folks who have previously acquired a home. Three assistance programs will help you pay for your house: DPA Second Mortgages, Deferred-Payment Loans, and Forgivable loans. These programs will offer you financial support to either pay for the down payment or the full payment of the house you are buying.

What are the types of assistance for first-home buyer grants?

A grant can help low-income families pay for a down payment on a home as well as the closing costs one will have to pay before moving in. Some grant programs are also accessible to folks who have previously acquired a home. First-time homebuyer grants vary from other down payment assistance programs in that they are effectively free money. Other down payment assistance programs can help you finance a home now but have strings attached for the future.

Furthermore, the following list contains grants for first time home buyers:

  • DPA second mortgages – There is a 30-year mortgage you can apply for to finance your home. This program will help you provide a down payment first or will be the one to pay for the closing costs of your home.

  • Deferred-payment loans – Several programs allow you to postpone these down payments until you sell your house, renegotiate your mortgage, or pay off your loan. In the interim, the assistance will not incur interest, so the amount you owe will not increase.

  • Forgivable loans – it permits debtors to have the balance of their loan forgiven in part or entirely provided they meet specified criteria.

What are the qualifications for a first-time homebuyer grant?

The applicant’s income limit should be labeled as “low-income” which means they earn 80% less of their area median income. Their home price has limitations which range to low-income only and the house price has a certain budget. While housing grants will mostly pay for the house expenses, the applicant must also contribute at least 1 percent of the purchase price or $1,000. As for your residence status, the house you will buy should be your primary residence. In the talks of education, the applicant must have an education course to be able to receive the funds.

How to discover local or state first-time homebuyer grants?

Finding first-time homebuyer grants can be difficult at first, not unless one knows how to look for one. To be qualified to apply for first-time homebuyer grants, the first option would be Bankrate’s directory of state housing authorities. The directory listed by Bankrate will help individuals find the help they are looking for. It is already divided into State, HFA, Mortgage lenders so that individuals will be hassled for looking for information on where to find any HFA offices. However, applying for these grants need also trust. If you are skeptical about applying for a grant, you may ask your real estate agent for advice. They are already professional in what they do and have been in the business industry for more years to come. They will assist you with grant programs you desire and will even let you go with them to check out neighborhoods where you want to purchase your house.
You can see an example in this article about the First-Time Homebuyer Assistance Programs in Alabama.

What is the difference between a loan and a grant for a home?

Grants are normally for a fixed amount of money and are restricted by the amount of funding available to the department that year. This is sponsored by the government, nonprofit and private organizations that offer free financial support to low-income individuals. On the other hand, loans are usually offered by banks given to qualified individuals and businesses. While grants don’t ask for repayment, applying for loans does. if one does not pay the money they loaned from a bank in due time, they are in danger of falling into debt, and the bank may acquire the necessary means to repay them such as seizing one’s property or lands. 

List of First-time Homebuyer Grant Options

Grant options for first-time homebuyers proved to be useful and helpful to first-time homebuyers. There are H\homebuyer subsidies are intended to help first-time buyers cover some of the costs of buying a home. They usually cover a portion of the down payment, closing costs, or even the entire home purchase price. They don’t require repayment as long as you stay in your home for the specified amount of time. These grants are funded by the U.S. government and they distribute it to states, counties, and municipalities to process the grant programs to be offered to first-time homebuyers.

Furthermore, the following list contains grants for first-time homebuyers:

  • HomePath Ready Buyer Program – Sponsored by the government, the funding of first-time homebuyers gets up to 3% of the purchase price of your house through this program to help with closing costs.

  • National Homebuyers Fund – It offers payments to be used for down payments and closing cost grants amounting to 5%. This is also available to not first0time homebuyers, although one is required to present their mortgage lender.

  • Bank of America Grant Programs – It has a combined budget of over $17,500 from America’s Home Grant and Down Payment Grant programs. The only downside of these two programs could result in tax implications and the requirements of presenting one’s mortgage from Bank of America.

  • Chase Homebuyer Grant – This is designed to help low-income families with over $2,500 budget for closing costs. 

  • Good Neighbor Next Door Program – This is also known as a “forgivable loan” and can be applied by law enforcement officers, teachers, firefighters, and emergency medical technicians. This is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development that provides up to 50% discount on homes situated in revitalization areas.

What are the Programs by the Department of Housing and Urban Development to Help You Pay for a Home?

These programs established by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) are designed for individuals who want to buy a home. They offer financial support that will alleviate financial constraints when it comes to the issue of expensive costs one needs to pay before one can buy a home.

Furthermore, the following list contains the programs created by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to help you pay for a home:

  • FHA Loans for First-Time Homebuyers – It has two programs to make the process of buying a home more affordable: FHA Loans and HUD Homes. These two programs ensure that first-time homebuyers will have their mortgages insured for them to afford loans in the future.

  • Homeownership Vouchers – This is specifically available for public housing residents and low-income individuals who want to purchase a house. They will be given the appropriate amount of funding that they can use for purchasing a house.

  • Indian Home Loan Guarantee Program – This program also goes by the name of Section 184 that aims to help American Indian and Alaska Native families and Tribes with their home mortgages.

  • Programs for Service Members and Veterans – This is only available for veterans and duty service members. It provides home loan programs that will help them buy their house.

  • Programs for Rural Residents – This provides loans, grants, and loan guarantees for rural residents. With these loans, rural residents will be allowed to help them find their job and affordable rental house to live on.

  • State Programs – These state programs are administered by a state housing finance agency or state HUD office. First-time homebuyers will be given the directions they need for the process of these state programs. Moreover, these state programs offer financial support to make affordable housing purchases accessible.

  • Foreclosure Properties – This is given to a licensed real estate agent. From then on, one will be given instructions on how to purchase any foreclosure properties.

What are HUD First-time Homebuyer loans?

HUD First-time Homebuyer loans have two loan programs namely FHA Loans and HUD Homes. First, we need to discuss the eligibility of these two loan programs. FHA Loans require a qualification of a loan with an FHA-approved lender. In short, one’s credit score doesn’t necessarily have to be high. If one wants to insure a home, it must be within the confines of loan limitations for an FHA home within its location. After one has complied with the said requirement, she/he may proceed to apply for an FHA-insured loan with the FHA-approved lender. On the other hand, HUD Homes it’s dependent on one’s overall credit score. The ability to purchase a mortgage and the amount of one’s cash down payment also matter. Moreover, in this loan program, one can use the FHA-insured mortgage to purchase a HUD home. After this, one can already proceed to find a list of HUD real estate-owned (REO) properties for sale through HUDHomestore. All applicants will be assisted on how to proceed from there. 

What is Homeowner Voucher Program?

A homeowner Voucher Program is designed for low-income individuals to assist them in buying their first house. To be eligible for this program, one should be a first0time buyer, meet the qualifications for the income requirement stated by the local public housing authority (PHA), should have one work experience full for at least one year, and have completed a homeownership and housing counseling program. After an individual meets the eligibility requirement, she/he may contact their local PHA or HUD’s PIH Customer Service Center to apply.


Low-income individuals and families can benefit from these Home Improvement grants. Taking care and beautifying a house can be too costly. You have to pay home repairs, mortgage, water and electricity bills, etc. Low-income individuals and families will surely have a hard time paying all this, especially if they don’t have a stable job or their salary isn’t enough to pay for it. Fortunately, these grants will give them the house they desire.