Wherever you want to buy your first home in Oregon, there are programs available to help you make a down payment or that they offer loans with favorable rates. At the state level, these are administered by the Oregon Department of Housing and Community Services. First-time home buyers (defined as those who have not owned a home in the past three years) may be eligible for these programs as long as they meet certain criteria.
First-time homebuyer loan programs in Oregon
Oregon Bond Residential Loan
The Oregon Residential Bond Loan Program offers a selection of low-rate mortgages, including conventional, FHA, VA, and USDA loans, with two first-time homebuyer assistance options:
- Cash advantage
- Rate advantage
The Cash Advantage option includes a lower-than-market mortgage and 3 percent of the cash loan amount to help reduce closing costs. (Note that 3 percent cannot be used for the required down payment on an FHA loan.) The Rate Advantage option also includes a lower-than-market mortgage rate, even lower than the Cash Advantage rate, but no cash assistance.
Borrower and property requirements for either include:
- Must meet the Oregon Residential Bond Loan income limits
- It must be a single family home, a condo, a unit in a planned unit development (PUD), or a manufactured home.
- Must be in Oregon
- Must meet Oregon Residential Bond Loan purchase price limits
The Oregon Bond Residential Loan is also available to repeat home buyers if the buyer is shopping in a specific target area.
Oregon Down Payment Assistance
Oregon Housing and Community Services offers information on various down payment assistance programs from organizations across the state, including:
- ACCESS – First-time homebuyers in Jackson or Josephine counties may qualify for a grant of up to $ 1,000 for a down payment, or a similar grant of up to $ 15,000 for veterans. Grants do not need to be repaid.
- African American Alliance for Homeownership (AAAH) – First-time homebuyers already in the AAAH program may be eligible for a savings contribution to help increase their down payment.
- Columbia Cascade Housing Corporation / Mid-Columbia Housing Authority – First-time homebuyers in Hood River, Sherman or Wasco counties can receive up to $ 5,000 for down payment or closing costs.
- Northeast Oregon Community Connection – First-time homebuyers in Baker, Grant, Union or Wallowa counties who are also veterans may be eligible for a down payment assistance loan of up to $ 15,000.
- Hacienda Community Development Corp. – Homebuyers can receive from $ 3,000 to $ 60,000 in assistance, depending on the program.
- Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA) – This organization connects Native American home buyers in the greater Portland area with local assistance and specialized mortgages.
- NeighborWorks Umpqua – First-time homebuyers in Coos, Curry, Douglas, Klamath, or Lake counties may be eligible for up to $ 10,000 in down payment assistance.
- Portland Housing Center – This local organization offers a variety of down payment assistance programs, including tandem or deferred loans, grants, and savings matching opportunities.
Many of these down payment assistance programs have certain requirements, such as income limits, a home buyer education requirement, or a minimum buyer contribution. Here is a complete List of Organizations Offering Down Payment Assistance in Oregon.
Other Loan Programs for First-Time Homebuyers
In addition to state and local first-time home buyer loan programs, buyers in Oregon can also explore universally offered products such as FHA loans, VA loans (available to military members, veterans, and spouses), and USDA loans (available in qualifying rural areas). . These have less stringent criteria, including a lower credit score and down payment requirements, and may have lower interest rates compared to a conventional loan. Take a look at Bankrate’s first-time home buyer programs for more information.
For more Oregon homeownership programs, including by city, visit HUD.gov.
Using the Oregon Department of Housing and Community Services as a resource, you can find more details about the state’s down payment assistance and first-time home buyer loan programs. The department’s website also has a list of mortgage lenders they can be searched by county. Be sure to ask questions about your eligibility and get help determining the amount of assistance you may qualify for.
Also, it is a good idea to compare prices mortgage rates and offers to ensure you receive the most competitive loan for your situation.