Hey all! I’m posting a little out of order so bear with me!
So this time around I’d like to reach out to our readers who are first-time home buyers or are thinking of buying their first home (which is mostly my generation at this point!). I know many who read this blog know my mom and know Linda, and are on not their second home, but possibly even their third or fourth (or are buying houses as investment properties). I will need your help with this, but I will get to that a little later in my post!
So I had coffee a couple weeks back with my good friend Ginny Schider, who is a Mortgage Banker and who is helping me learn a little bit more about the ins and outs of financing for homes. One of my big concerns was that a grand majority of people my age are renters, who talk about one day finding the home of their dreams but who feel they are unable to afford costly down-payments.
”My generation has been really put through the ringer,” I said to Ginny over a warm spiced chai “especially for those of us who graduated during the economic fall around 2008. A lot of my friends work food service and have to deal with student debt. It kind of feels like owning a home is so far out of reach.”
Then Ginny smiled at me and said “You know there is down payment assistance for first time homebuyers as well as grants that they can receive to aid in the purchase of their first home.”
This immediately sparked my interest as I was fully aware that buying a home for the first time can be so overwhelming, and with most of my friends working at coffee shops, restaurants, and retail; going from an apartment to a house/condo can seem like a blind leap into the abyss of added debt. So I inquired further about these payment assistant programs that are geared toward helping people in the position of purchasing their first home. One of which works similar to a grant (and for those of us who have had to pay for college, grants are a pretty sweet deal!)
Ginny told me that about her own company offering a grant (The PRM Platinum Purchase Program) which can cover up to 5% of the loan on purchasing a property. This could help pay for down payments and even closing costs, which can come across as a little daunting at first. This particular grant is provided by her company; Pacific Residential Mortgage. After mentioning this, she and I spoke further on various tools available for new home buyers (though existing home owners are eligible for this grant as well). She also mentioned two programs that are geared toward offering assistance for anybody within Clackamas County: Clackamas Homebuyer Assistance Program (CHAP) and NCRA which is a program that works with licensed lenders to loan up to $14,000 to help pay for down payments and closing costs (though she later told me that these assistance programs are not grants, because you later pay them back when you sell the house). These assistance programs are provided via the community rather than that of her company and are only available for first-time home buyers.
Now I know that so far I have come across as a little gimmicky, and I’ll be completely honest about it: I’ve been writing about assistance programs and grants to help spark interest in making that push toward purchasing a home. But you know what? Buying your first home IS scary, it IS difficult, it can be overwhelming, and these assistance programs are meant to help cushion the blow so that more people can add home ownership to their assets. Being a homeowner is a very important boon to your own personal worth as that property is yours. Everybody wants the home of their dreams and financing it makes up the grand majority of achieving that goal, so it is really nice that there are tools out there to help.
So now I am going to wrap up my blog post by asking our experienced readers out there to share a little bit about their own first-time home buying experience! We may not get very many posts as some may feel shy, but that is alright! I think it is important to hear that we have all been in the same boat with taking on the pins and needles sensation of buying a first home, and I would like to share to help our new home buyers know that they are not alone!
For more information on home buying assistance please feel free to send me an e-mail!