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New state program offers down payment help for teachers

New state program offers down payment help for teachers

By Ron Trujillo/

It’s back-to-school time, evident from the everywhere sales and the long faces on students. But it could also be homebuying time for teachers and others who educate youth in the state.

The California Housing Finance Agency (CalHFA), the state agency for low- to moderate-income residents, Is encouraging more employees in the public school system to become first-time homeowners.

The agency’s new School Teacher and Employee Assistance Program has replaced the Extra Credit Teacher Home Purchase Program. The program offers down payment assistance, in the form of a loan paid back down the road, to those connected to education in the state school system.

Teachers, administrators, counselors, bus drivers, cafeteria employees, janitors and anyone else working in the kindergarten through high school public school system can apply for the School Teacher and Employee Assistance Program. The program includes employees in public charter schools, school district offices and county continuation schools.

Under the program, CalHFA allows educators down payment assistance as much as 4% of the sales price or appraisal value of a home, whichever is less. For example, educators could receive up to $16,000 for a $400,000 home.

Of course, there are some program requirements, including:

  • Be a first-time homebuyer. Basically, you must not have owned or occupied their own home within the past three years.
  • Occupy the home as primary residence.
  • Homebuyers must complete homebuyer education counseling and obtain a certificate of completion through an eligible homebuyer counseling organization.
  • Meet CalHFA income limit requirements, which ranges from $118,500 in rural counties to more than $228,000 in San Francisco.
  • Be currently employed at a public school or district in the state.

Additional information, including how to apply, is available here.

Feature photo by Africa Stock/Shutterstock

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