Exciting News for First-Time Home Buyers in Suffolk: Down Payment Program Introduced

Exciting News for First-Time Home Buyers in Suffolk: Down Payment Program Introduced

Suffolk County Takes the Lead: Announcing an Exciting Homeowner Down Payment Assistance Program

In an effort to make homeownership more attainable, Suffolk County has opened the application process for a groundbreaking homeowner down payment assistance program. County Executive Steve Bellone unveiled the program on Thursday, aiming to empower eligible first-time homebuyers with up to $30,000 towards the purchase of a single-family residence, with the condition that they reside in the home for at least 10 years.

The program covers eligible areas within the Suffolk County Consortium, which comprises the five eastern towns, Smithtown, and Huntington, excluding certain villages. For residents of Islip, Babylon, and Brookhaven, specific programs are available.

Bellone emphasized the significance of homeownership in fostering stable families and stronger communities, stating, “Access to homeownership is a fundamental element and has been in our country’s history towards securing long-term stability and security for families.”

Excitingly, this year, the program has been expanded to offer up to $30,000 per homeowner, compared to the previous $14,000, provided they commit to living in the home for a decade. This substantial increase is aimed at allowing more individuals to seize this incredible opportunity to realize their dreams of homeownership.

Since its inception in 1993, the program has been a beacon of hope for homebuyers, offering up to $30,000 to contribute towards their down payment. While the program assists with the down payment, buyers are responsible for the remaining balance and all closing costs.

Prospective applicants are required to attend housing counseling before submitting their applications. Additionally, a mortgage counseling certificate is mandatory for applying to the program. Notably, U.S. military veterans with an honorable discharge (DD-214) are exempt from the first-time buyer qualification requirement.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Applicants must meet the definition of a first-time homebuyer, according to HUD guidelines, meaning they have not owned a home within the three-year period immediately preceding the purchase.
  • Prospective applicants should represent a low to moderate-income household with an annual income not exceeding 80% of the area median income, as determined by HUD, with adjustments for family size.
  • A minimum of $3,000 must be banked at the time of application, and documented minimum income should be at least $40,000, with the ability to obtain a mortgage from a qualified lender.
  • Maximums are set based on 2023 HUD income guidelines, and qualified applicants should be able to secure a mortgage from a lender.
  • The maximum appraised value of an existing home should not exceed $532,000, while for newly constructed homes, the appraised value should not exceed $555,000.
  • The applicant must commit to occupying the property as their primary residence for at least 10 years.
  • Single-family homes, condominiums, and cooperative apartments (co-ops) are eligible for the program.

Suffolk County’s homeowner down payment assistance program opens new doors for prospective buyers, making homeownership a reality for many who have dreamt of having a place to call their own. Don’t miss this golden opportunity to secure your future in the vibrant community of Suffolk County. Apply now and embark on your journey to becoming a proud homeowner!

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