Georgia Down Payment Assistance 2022
October 4, 2022
For first-time home buyers, buying a house in Georgia has become much more expensive in recent years because of the rising home prices but also because of the down payment. According to Zillow, since 2020 home prices in Georgia have increased by $100,000. The current median purchase price for Georgia homes sits at $345,000 and the expected down payment is 20% of the sale which leaves would-be homeowners having to come up with an additional $69,000 just for the down payment.
Not everyone can afford this amount for a down payment on a home. Luckily, there are many Georgia programs and grants available to help home buyers with their down payment and closing costs on a house. Here are a few down payment assistance programs available in Georgia.
What is a Down Payment?
The down payment is a lump sum payment buyers make in advance to purchase a home. It can be seen as an initial investment into the property. The down payment is a portion of the home’s total purchase price – typically 3% to 20% of the sale price. The remainder of the money left on the house will be provided through a mortgage lender.
The down payment required for a house is determined by the mortgage, lender, and financial circumstances. A larger down payment on a house can give borrowers a lower interest rate and also a lower total amount needed to be borrowed, which means that the monthly payment will be lower as well.
Average Down Payment in Georgia
There is an expectation that home buyers have to pay 20% as a down payment when buying a house. However, this percentage is not what most home buyers put down on a house. The NAR report in 2022 found that the median amount that home buyers put down is 13% of the total price of the home. First-time buyers can put down even less on a home with 22 to 41yr olds making an 8% to 10% down payment.
The down payment on a mortgage can be as low as 3% or even 0% in some cases. There are government-backed mortgages like FHA, VA, and USDA loans that are ideal for low-income home buyers because of their less restrictive requirements. Also, some grants and programs can help buyers pay for the down payment.
Georgia Down Payment Assistance in 2022
The state of Georgia hosts several programs to help first-time home buyers with the cost of a down payment and closing costs. Here are some Georgia down payment assistance programs available in 2022.
Georgia Dream Program
The Georgia Down Payment Assistance Program is available to first-time home buyers or buyers who haven’t owned a home in 3 years. The program provides up to $10,000 to anyone who is accepted into the program. The loan for the down payment has zero interest and has to be repaid when you sell your house or refinance the mortgage loan.
There are eligibility requirements for the Georgia Dream Loan that go farther than being a first-time home buyer. There are…
- Certain household incomes are within the requirements.
- Have to contribute at least $1,000 of your own funds to the down payment.
- Need liquid assets of at least $20,000 or 20% of the purchase price, whichever one is higher.
- You also need to meet the specific requirements for a 30yr fixed rate mortgage loan.
- If you are in a targeted Georgia county, then you don’t have to be a first-time home buyer.
Check out all of the requirements for the Georgia Dream program here. There are two other down payment options within the program: PEN and CHOICE.
The Georgia PEN program is available for active military, educators, public protectors, and health care providers. The program allows eligible home buyers to qualify for up to $10,000.
The Georgia CHOICE program is available for home buyers who have a disability or that live with a family member with a disability. The program allows eligible home buyers to qualify for up to $10,000.
HOME Atlanta 4.0
HOME Atlanta 4.0 is a program through Invest Atlanta, an economic development organization created by the City of Atlanta, that helps home buyers pay for the down payment and closing costs on a house. The program provides a forgivable grant that is 3.5% of the property’s purchase price along with an FHA or VA loan at a competitive interest rate. The grant is forgiven at closing.
You have to qualify for an FHA or VA loan to be eligible for the Home Atlanta program and you also need a credit score of at least 660 with a DTI of at most 45% to 50%. There are certain household income requirements and eligible properties that can be found on the website for the program. The maximum purchase price that the program will cover is $335,000.
Augusta Down Payment Assistance
The city of Augusta in Georgia has a program that provides down payment assistance to the federally defined “first-time home buyer”. The program offers a forgivable loan of $500 to $5,000 to first-time home buyers to help with the down payment and closing costs. The loan is forgiven after 5 years of living in the home as a residential property. The maximum income and purchase price required by the program varies widely.
There are many requirements for the program which can be found here.
Vine City Renaissance Initiative
Vine city is a neighborhood in Atlanta that offers DPA to any eligible home buyer moving into the area. The initiative offers a 30yr fixed rate FHA, VA, or a conventional loan at a competitive interest rate along with $10,000 to help with the down payment and closing costs. The $10,000 is fully forgiven after living in the home for 5 years as a residential property.
Lenders that participate in the initiative determine the credit score requirements for the borrowers. This program also has a fee of $1,000 to cover a required educational class and as a commitment to the 5 years living demand. There is no purchase price limit for this program.
Learn more about the Vine City Renaissance Initiative.
Atlanta Affordable Homeownership Program
Home buyers get up to $20,000 that goes toward the down payment and closing costs. Depending on how much you get, the loan is forgiven after living in the residential property for 5 to 10 years. To be eligible for the program, home buyers cannot have $10,000 or more in liquid assets. Home buyers also need a credit score of at least 580 and a maximum DTI of 43%.
In order to qualify for this program, you have to qualify for a 30yr fixed rate FHA, VA, or conventional mortgage that is offered by an Invest Atlanta participating mortgage lender. The home of your choice must also be within the city limits of Atlanta and it needs to pass inspections paid by the Atlanta Affordable Homeownership Program. Read more about the requirements for the program here.
Intown Mortgage Assistance Program
Intown Mortgage Assistance Program gives eligible home buyers a 30yr fixed rate FHA, VA, or conventional mortgage loan along with up to $10,000 toward the down payment and closing costs. The loan for the down payment is forgiven after living in the residential property for 5 years. To qualify for this program, you need a minimum credit score of 660 and a maximum DTI of 45%. Eligible home buyers have to pay a fee of $1,000 and cannot have more than $25,000 in liquid assets. The maximum home sale price for the program is $335,000.
You can find more information about the Intown Mortgage Assistance Program on the Invest Atlanta website.
Work With The Best Georgia Real Estate Agents When Buying a House
Looking for a good real estate agent in Georgia? Then you’ll want to work with a Negotiator. Negotiators are top-performing real estate agents who have a proven track record of getting their clients the best possible deal on their home purchase or sale. These agents are located in Georgia along with many other states across the country and have a wealth of experience in helping people move to a new house.
Search to find a Georgia Negotiator here.