First-Time Buyer Programs and Grants



 

Did you know that every county in the Greater Philadelphia region has grant programs that offer down payment and closing cost assistance to eligible first-time buyers? It's true! PMA also has access to a wide array of state programs offered through the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA)New Jersey Housing and Finance Agency (NJHMFA) and the City of Wilmington, DE that can make it easier for first-time buyers to purchase a home!

 

Bucks County First-Time Homebuyer Program

Program can provide up to $10,000 in the form of a zero interest, deferred payment mortgage, to buyers who meet eligibility criteria.

Program Guidelines:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or have not owned a home in the past three years.
  • Six months residency in Bucks County will be required for at least one of the adult or, one of the adults has had continuous employment of a minimum of one (1) year at a place of work located in Bucks County
  • Property must be located in Bucks County.
  • The property must be the principal residence of the homebuyer.
  • Rental or investment properties are not eligible for assistance under this program.
  • Minimum borrower contribution is three percent of the purchase price.
  • Maximum sales price: $375,000.

For more information, including purchase price and income limits, visit Bucks County Department of Housing & Community Development.

 

Chester County First-Time Homebuyer Program

Provides a 0% interest second mortgage of up to $40,000 for purchase of a home in Chester County to those total gross household income at or below 80% of the median income.

Program Guidelines:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or have not owned a home in the past three years.
  • Maximum loan of $40,000.
  • Interest rate of zero percent (0%).
  • Recording of a second mortgage lien on the property being financed and repayment of the loan when the home is sold, transferred or refinanced.
  • Minimum borrower contribution: at least $1,000 towards the purchase of the home plus two (2) months reserves by settlement.
  • Maximum allowable down payment 20% (Minimum LTV 80%).
  • Liquid assets of borrower after closing cannot exceed $15,000.‚Äč
  • Be existing or newly constructed single family detached, semi-detached, attached, or condominiums within Chester County.
  • Have sales price that is determined by HUD's HOME program.
  • Buyer must complete homebuyer seminar.

For more information, including purchase price and income limits, visit the Housing Partnership of Chester County.

 

Delaware County Homeownership First Program

In addition to pre- and post-purchase homeownership counseling, the program offers down payment and closing cost assistance to eligible homebuyers. The total assistance is not to exceed $5,000; this will cover up to 2 percent of the down payment of the new home, with the remaining funds put towards eligible closing costs as needed.

Program Guidelines:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or have not owned a home in the past three years.
  • Single family, residential, owner-occupied houses (detached, twin, rowhouse, townhouse or apt. condominium).
  • Provides up to $5,000/2 percent of the down payment of the new home, with the remaining funds put towards eligible closing costs as needed.
  • Borrowers are also required to pay a minimum of $1,000 toward the purchase of the home.
  • Must complete a mandatory eight hours of group homeownership counseling, and a minimum of one individual counseling session.

For more information, including purchase price and income limits, visit delcopa.gov.

 

Montgomery County First-Time Homebuyers Program

Provides 0% interest loan based on the financial need of the applicant’s household, selling price of property, and household assets, up to a maximum  of 10% of the estimated affordable sales price for participants, not to exceed $10,000.00.

Program Guidelines:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or have not owned a home in the past three years.
  • Maximum loan amount: 10% of estimated affordable sales price not to exceed $10,000.
  • Have a household income below the area median income.
  • Intend to occupy the property purchased as a primary residence.
  • Reside and/or be employed full-time within Montgomery County at the time of Program application and closing.
  • Complete the required counseling program prior to executing any contract of sale.
  • Have a minimum of $3,000.00 liquid assets at the time of application (no gifts of cash or equity permitted towards the first 3%).
  • Three percent of the sales price towards the down payment is required.
  • Applicants must use their own liquid assets (savings, checking, money markets, certificates of deposits, mutual funds, stocks, bonds, etc.) prior to Homebuyer Funds.
  • Assistance is not available if applicant has 10% or more of the sales price to put towards purchase.
  • Assistance amount is based on the selling price, liquid assets, closing costs, mortgage amount, and other fees paid in the acquisition of the property.

For more information, including purchase price and income limits, visit Montgomery County Housing and Community Development.

 

New Jersey Housing and Mortgage and Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

NJHMFA loans can make it easier for you to qualify with NJHMFA’s statewide Down Payment Assistance Program that provides $10,000 for qualified first-time home buyers to use for down payment and closing costs in the form of an interest-free, five-year forgivable second loan with no monthly payment!

For more information, visit our NJHMFA Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance Page.

 

Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA)

As an award-winning lender for the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA), we can offer more options to help first-time buyers get approved, including programs requiring only 3% down, generous seller assistance and even no-interest, forgivable down payment and closing cost assistance loans!

For more information, visit our PHFA Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance Page.

 

Philly First Home Program

The City of Philadelphia offers a homebuyer assistance grant of up to $10,000 (or 6% of the home’s purchase price, whichever is lower) to assist first-time homebuyers reduce the principal, cover down payment and loan closing costs.

Program Guidelines:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or have not owned a home in the past three years.
  • The property must be a single-family home or duplex located in Philadelphia (no condominiums).
  • Provides down payment assistance of up to $10,000 or 6% of the sales price (whichever is less).
  • Must complete one-on-one homeownership counseling.
  • Must meet income qualifications.
  • The funds are a lien on the property that is forgiven after 15 years.

For more information, including purchase price and income limits, visit the Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation (PHDC).

 

Upper Darby First-Time Buyer Program

This Program offers a maximum of $10,000.00 forgivable loan for down payment assistance to qualified low-income households that has not owned a home within the past three years.

Program Guidelines:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or have not owned a home in the past three years.
  • Single family, vacant, or owner-occupied principal residences (existing or new construction) located within Upper Darby Township are eligible.
  • Assistance is provided via a forgivable 0% second mortgage.
  • No forgiveness is given over the first four years. Beginning with the 5th year and ending with the 10th year the Upper Darby Township mortgage will be forgiven at a rate of 16.67% per year. At the end of the 10th year (from the settlement date) the mortgage will completely dissolve and be removed. No payment is due.

For more information, including purchase price and income limits, visit upperdarby.org,

 

Wilmington (DE) First Start Homebuyer Program

This Program offers offers a homebuyer assistance grant of up to $15,000 (or 6% of the home’s purchase price, whichever is lower) to help cover down payment and closing costs, making it easier to buy your first home.

Program Guidelines:

  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or have not owned a home in the last 3 years.
  • Home must be located in the City of Wilmington.
  • Must be a qualified low or moderate-income household.
  • Must be the owner of, and occupy, the property after purchase.
  • Buyer must contribute at least $1,000 towards closing costs.

For more information, including purchase price and income limits, visit wilmingtonde.gov,