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    Buying a home is a big financial decision, and it can be even more daunting for first-time homebuyers. The good news is that there are several state and local programs that can help you make the dream of homeownership a reality.

    According to the National Association of Realtors, an estimated 3.5 million first-time homebuyers purchased a home in 2022. Of those, approximately 1.5 million used some form of state or local down payment assistance program. This is up from 1.2 million in 2021.

    The increase in the number of first-time homebuyers using state programs is a positive development. Homeownership has many benefits, including financial security, stability, and a sense of community. By providing down payment assistance, states and localities are helping to make homeownership more attainable for first-time homebuyers.

    Here is a state-by-state guide to first-time homebuyer grants:


    The Alabama Housing Finance Authority Since 1980, AHFA has helped more than 75,000 Alabamians purchase a home and provided funding for more than 48,000 rental housing units serving as Alabama’s affordable housing resource. Through its single-family financing programs, AHFA offers affordable interest rates and entry cost assistance on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage loans.


    The Alaska Housing Finance Corporation Making mortgages accessible to Alaskans has been at the core of Alaska Housing. Over the years responsibilities of AHFC have expanded to include affordable housing programs, energy efficiency, senior housing and more.


    The Arizona Department of Housing The AzIDA’s HOME+PLUS Home Buyer Down Payment Assistance Program seeks to eliminate the down payment hurdle. Offering a pathway to homeownership and giving creditworthy renters who can qualify for a mortgage but cannot afford the down payment and or closing costs, the funds to move forward.


    The Arkansas Development Finance Authority ADFA Homeownership and Down Payment Assistance Programs make purchasing a home more affordable for low-to-moderate income families and individuals. Find out what programs ADFA offers and how they can help you achieve your dream of homeownership.


    The California Housing Finance Agency CalHFA offers several options for down payment and closing cost assistance. This type of assistance is often called a second or subordinate loan. CalHFA’s subordinate loans are “silent seconds”, meaning payments on this loan are deferred so you do not have to make a payment on this assistance until your home is sold, refinanced or paid in full.


    The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority Homebuyers using one of their first mortgage loan programs to finance their home purchase are eligible to use CHFA assistance options to help with down payment and/or closing costs. Up to 3 percent of your first mortgage. No repayment required.


    The Connecticut Housing Finance Authority offers a variety of programs to help first-time homebuyers, including down payment assistance grants, closing cost assistance, and mortgage interest rate reductions. If you have the monthly income to pay mortgage payments, but not enough money to pay the upfront costs, you may qualify for a low-interest loan to help you cover the down payment and closing costs. Borrowers can finance the down payment and closing costs with a DAP loan.  A DAP loan is a second mortgage on your home.


    The Delaware State Housing Authority A DSHA mortgage is a 30-year, fixed-rate loan with interest rates at or below the standard market rate for qualified buyers. DSHA also offers down payment and closing cost assistance as well as a First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit.


    The Florida Housing Finance Corporation Florida Housing offers a Homebuyer Program that offers 30-year fixed rate first mortgage loans to first time homebuyers through participating lenders and lending institutions throughout the State of Florida. Eligible borrowers may also participate in one of Florida Housing’s second mortgage programs to assist borrowers with down payment assistance and closing costs.


    The Georgia Department of Community Affairs Whether it’s help getting a first mortgage through Georgia Dream, with online payment options through State Home Mortgage, counselling future homeowners, or lending a hand when life brings unexpected hardship, DCA staff stand ready to assist Georgians aspiring to the dream of homeownership.


    The Hawaii Housing Finance and Development Corporation offers a variety of programs to help first-time homebuyers, including down payment assistance grants, closing cost assistance, and mortgage interest rate reductions.


    The Idaho Housing and Finance Association is a unique financial institution and administrator of affordable housing resources. In its simplest form, Idaho Housing’s mission is to provide funding for affordable housing opportunities in Idaho communities where they are most needed and when it is economically feasible, including up to $35,000, down payment assistance, and mortgage interest rate reductions.


    The Illinois Housing Development Authority For more than 30 years, IHDA has been helping people like you find affordable apartments or buy their home. Their mortgage products are ideal for borrowers who need extra flexibility or who have limited funds for down payment and/or closing costs yet have the financial means to maintain monthly mortgage payments.


    The Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority We offer programs that assist with making down payments, getting low-interest rate loans, and offering a tax credit. This includes 6% in down payment assistance for first-time buyers and 3.5% for repeat buyers.


    The Iowa Finance Authority With the help of their mortgage, down payment and closing cost assistance programs, the dream of homeownership is within reach. First-time homebuyers, experienced buyers and everyone in between can make use of their programs.


    The Kansas Housing Resources Corporation KHRC helps enable the dream of homeownership through offering first-time buyers assistance with down payment and closing costs. KHRC collaborates with a network of participating lenders across the state, allowing homebuyers to apply for a 0% interest loan in the amount of 15 or 20% of the home’s purchase price. Other programs available.


    The Kentucky Housing Corporation KHC recognizes that down payments, closing costs, and prep​aids are stumbling blocks for many potential home buyers. They offer a special loan program to help with those. This includes Assistance in the form of a loan up to $10,000 in $100 increments.


    The Louisiana Housing Corporation offers several homeownership programs that help low to moderate income homebuyers achieve their dream of owning a home. The programs offer a variety of 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages, some at below market interest rates.


    The Maine State Housing Authority provides low fixed rate mortgages and other assistance to help make homeownership affordable. No point and low point options are available. There are options with little or no down payment required, if you still need help with the cash needed for closing, they also offer down payment and closing cost assistance. MaineHousing mortgages even come with payment protection for unemployment.


    The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development has programs to assist homebuyers and homeowners. For homebuyers, they offer mortgages and downpayment assistance to help families achieve the American dream of homeownership.


    The Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development through its community and business partners, provides affordable housing options, financial assistance, and other support to Massachusetts communities.  They oversee different types of assistance and funding for consumers, businesses, and non-profit partners.


    The Michigan State Housing Development Authority. Whether you are a first-time homebuyer or a seasoned veteran of the housing market, MSHDA has a mortgage product to meet your needs including down payment assistance up to $10,000.


    The Minnesota Housing Finance Agency. Whether you want to buy your first home or your next or refinance, remodel or repair the one you’re in, Minnesota Housing may have the affordable program that works for you. When you qualify for a loan and are eligible for the Minnesota Housing Start Up or Step Up programs, you also have the option to access one of downpayment and closing cost loans.

    Contact Embrace Home Loans to Learn More!

    If you are a first-time homebuyer and you are interested in learning more about the grants that are available in your state, you can contact Embrace Home Loans®.

    We are a full-service mortgage lender that has been helping first-time homebuyers achieve their dream of homeownership for over 30 years. Our team of experienced mortgage professionals can help you understand the different types of grants that are available and help you determine if you qualify.

    To contact a local loan officer, go here.

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