Launching of First-Time Home Buyer’s Assistance Program by City of Chattanooga set for June 12 at Housing Resource Fair
In an effort to bolster homeownership among Chattanoogans, the City of Chattanooga Tennessee, in conjunction with the Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise, is set to introduce the First-Time Home Buyer Grant and Loan Program. This ambitious initiative will be officially unveiled at the city’s Affordable Housing Resource Fair slated for June 12, hosted at the Glenwood Community Center. With zero percent interest loans and beneficial grants, the program is specifically tailored to assist Chattanoogans who earn an income equal to or below the 100 percent area median income (AMI).
The introduction of this initiative will be accompanied by a comprehensive panel discussion on the same day, presented by city officials, representatives from CNE, and other local service providers. The discussion aims to clarify the details of the program and kick off the application process.
“One Chattanooga is our commitment towards ensuring every single resident of our city has the opportunity to realize their potential fully,” remarked Mayor Tim Kelly. “This novel program enriches our array of tools designed to make homeownership achievable for residents across all income brackets. We are investing considerable effort to amplify the availability of affordable housing across the city, and we want our citizens to be aware of and utilize the resources at their disposal—from support for down payments and home repair assistance to strategies for lowering their energy bills.”
The event—Affordable Housing Resources Fair + Launch of the First-Time Home Buyer Grant & Loan Program—will take place on Monday, June 12, between 4:30-7 p.m., at the Glenwood Community Center located at 2610 E 3rd St. in Chattanooga.
The fair will host a plethora of service agencies and organizations onsite, each providing a diverse range of resources to residents in need. Services offered include support for eviction prevention, first-time homebuyer assistance, and guidance in navigating the process of obtaining housing vouchers.
Chattanooga’s Chief Housing Officer, Nicole Heyman, underlined the significance of the event: “Every Chattanoogan deserves the chance to afford a home, and while the city offers numerous programs to help turn this into a reality, many residents are either unaware of them or find the navigation process daunting.” She added, “Our first Affordable Housing Resources Fair saw participation from over 100 residents, and we anticipate even more attendees this time. I’m deeply appreciative of our city partners who have united to make this possible, and who support our efforts in spreading awareness about the various resources and opportunities available to those in need of affordable housing options.”
The event will also serve as a platform for landlords possessing vacant units in need of repair. They are encouraged to participate and gain insights about the city’s rehab and repair programs, which offer financial resources in exchange for affordable rental prices.
The program has been made possible through collaborations with various partners including the AIM Center, Chattanooga Community Housing Development Organization, Chattanooga Housing Authority, Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise, City of Chattanooga Neighborhood Services, Consumer Credit Counseling, EPB, Eviction Prevention Initiative, Food Bank, GreenSpaces, Habitat for Humanity, Hamilton County Health Department, Metropolitan Ministries, Pinnacle, Truist, and United Way.
Income eligibility for the program’s loans and grants is categorized into two segments. Households with an income less than 80 percent AMI can avail of a one-time grant of up to $10,000 for closing cost assistance and a loan of up to $50,000, repayable in full at the time of resale or cash-out refinance. That earning between 80 and 100 percent AMI are eligible for a one-time grant of up to $10,000 in closing cost assistance and a zero percent interest loan of up to $40,000, also due in full upon resale or cash-out refinance.
Additional requisites of the program include a minimum contribution of $500 towards the home purchase by all purchasers, the use of the home as their primary residence throughout the loan period, and mandatory attendance at homebuyer education classes.
Guidelines for Property Purchase:
The maximum permissible sale price of homes is capped at $300,000.
Condominiums and two-family owner-occupied homes qualify.