Should Real Estate Agents Consider Down Payment Assistance Programs for Helping Homebuyers

 

As a real estate agent, your homebuyers have many choices when it comes to financing the purchase of a home. One such choice is Down payment assistance (DPA), a key product that credit worthy, low-income homebuyers are choosing to realize realizing their dream of owning a home.

 

Throughout the United States, real estate agents are learning that working with lenders who represent Chenoa Fund DPA benefits them when listing and financing homes for their clients. In this article we are going to introduce just how critical DPA is for the homebuyer and ask you to consider DPA products as a way to increase your opportunities in the communities you serve.

 

Advancing its efforts to help more Americans access affordable housing, CBC Mortgage Agency (CBCMA) has released a national down payment assistance study that documents DPA’s vital role as a bridge to sustainable homeownership.

 

The study, conducted nationwide over the summer of 2019, measured the impacts of DPA through the personal experiences of lenders and borrows. The study can be viewed at: https://chenoafund.org/lender/2019-state-of-down-payment-assistance-report/

 

Among other findings, the study revealed that more than nine out of ten surveyed homebuyers would not have been able to purchase a home without down payment assistance.

 

The study also found that more than half of surveyed buyers were racial or ethnic minorities, and that more than one-third of all borrowers who received DPA are the first in their family to buy a home.

 

The study was done to illuminate the importance of DPA to lenders and borrowers across the country, and its findings are compelling. It’s clear that, without DPA, millions of Americans would be shut out of the homebuying market. With it, creditworthy buyers and their families can reap the many benefits of homeownership, which creates healthier communities and other positive outcomes for our nation.

 

The study queried 735 lenders and more than 1,100 borrowers, asking a series of questions about the importance of DPA, as well as their overall homebuying experience.

 

Respondents cited multiple factors when asked how the availability of DPA had affected their lives:

  •  Nearly half of all buyers said that saving for a down payment had been the principal reason they had delayed a house purchase.
  • A significant portion of respondents said that, for single parents, DPA is the only vehicle that makes homebuying possible.
  •  More than nine out of ten borrowers who used DPA to obtain a loan said they considered their mortgage “affordable.”
  •  Lenders said DPA was particularly helpful for buyers carrying student loan debt. They also said many of their clients had been paying more in rent than the cost of their new monthly mortgage.

 

What Lenders Are Saying

The following sample responses reflect the majority opinions of lenders in the study.

 

“Chenoa Fund provides a great program and offers an outstanding loan option for homebuyers that are unable to provide a full down payment but able to afford a new home. This allows for homeownership for people who would otherwise have to rent and not provide a benefit to the communities, nor themselves and their families. The program is a much better program than our local program offers such as CDA and MMP program.”—Scott Nortman

 

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“Down payment is the biggest challenge my clients face. My clients have good jobs and have seen their income rise with the better economy, but student loans and other debts continue to make it hard for them to save money to buy a home. Without programs like Chenoa Fund, these people might have to wait years to become homeowners. Instead, they get a fair rate and payment and a chance to take advantage of the strong housing market.”—Jeffrey E Nunley

 

 “My minority clients work multiple low-paying jobs and support their families while paying high rent; this DPA program allows them the opportunity to achieve the American Dream while building wealth for them and their families. Losing this program will financially hurt this segment of our population.” —Kathren J Rosales

 

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“This program allowed a Mexican immigrant family who did not have access to other down payment assistance programs . . . They had been working and working, cleaning up credit, trying to build savings, everything they could do to get into a home, but the housing costs just kept creeping up, and every time they took one step forward, the market took them one step back. This niche program is designed to catch the people who are falling between the cracks of traditional down payment assistance, and allows them to get their foot in the door on properties instead of always playing catch-up to a target advancing at the same rate.” —Michael Distad

 

 

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”This program is important to every single borrower it helps. We have used this product on a single borrower who not only needed it but deserved it. I have had many borrowers who we helped get into homeownership with the Chenoa Fund program, who start crying at closing because they never thought they could own their own home. Especially helping single mothers get into a home for their families, so they don’t have to move every year.” —Rebecca Skiles

 

 

What Borrowers Are Saying

The following sample responses reflect the majority opinions of borrowers in the study.

 “My husband and I have rented our whole lives together (twenty-six years), and we were so excited when Chenoa Fund made it possible to finally own a home! We made every sacrifice necessary to get the house of our dreams. They made sure we could financially afford the home and had us take a class on how to stay financially stable so that we can keep our home. We were so ready for this step, and we have never been happier with our beautiful home.” —Bonnie Johnson

 

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“I am very appreciative of this program. Without this help, I would not have been able to buy my home. I live paycheck to paycheck, and it’s very hard to save money. With this program I now pay the same I was paying for rent but the home is mine.” —Elizabeth Allende

 

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“Our small family has been beyond thrilled with the first nine months of homeownership, and we couldn’t have done it without your assistance! As a child, I was never blessed with a stress-free environment, or even a guaranteed place to call home. Thanks to the Chenoa Fund, it puts my mind at ease knowing my disabled husband and toddler will never have to think or wonder where home will be next month. They’ll never have to choose between a full belly or a warm blanket, and I can’t thank you enough for that! Let alone, the accomplishment one feels from owning their first home. Thank you, Chenoa Fund, from the bottom of our hearts!” —Holly Dockstader

 

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“At the time I started looking for a house, me and my family were living in a dangerous neighborhood. A lot of break-ins and robberies started taking place in the community. I have four kids and I was so afraid for their safety. I had just landed a new job and didn’t have enough money saved just yet to make a down payment. By being able to receive this fund which was definitely a gift from God. I moved my family to a new community which was much safer and quiet.” —Carl Williams

 

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“Owning a home makes me feel as [if] I belong somewhere. I moved from an unsafe apartment building to a cute little house I can call my own. The Chenoa Fund program made it possible for me to buy a home in a neighborhood that’s much safer for me.” —Cindy Rhoads

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 “I feel it’s a dream to some, a dream that many people would not be able to achieve without this type of [program]. I’m a single mother of two that participated in the Section 8 program when my eldest child was younger. I was able to attend my local community college and obtain a degree which significantly increased my income. Without the down payment assistance, I would not have been able to purchase my first home, despite nearly tripling my income since becoming a nurse. I was not able to save enough money for a significant down payment.”

“Programs like this give people, that defeat the odds of poverty, an opportunity to achieve home ownership. I am grateful a program like this exists; it has made my dream of home ownership a reality.” —Doni Anders

 

 

Chenoa Fund—The Nationwide Down Payment Assistance Program

At CBC Mortgage Agency https://chenoafund.org/, we offer Chenoa Fund, a down payment assistance program that provides DPA in the form of second mortgages. We offer five different second mortgage products, each with their own individual underwriting requirements and guidelines, in an effort to provide options to borrowers of any income and most DTIs. Our options include products for both FHA and conventional loans; some of our products include 0% interest rates and no monthly payments. 

 

  • Click here  to find an approved Chenoa Fund lender.
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