May I qualify for more than $30,000 of assistance? No, the maximum amount of assistance under this program is $30,000.
How is the back-end ratio calculated? The back-end ratio is calculated by adding together all of a borrower’s monthly debt payments and dividing the sum by the borrower’s monthly gross income. For example, a brrower whose monthly gross income is $5,000 ($60,000 annually divided by 12) and who has total monthly debt payments of $2,000 has a back-end ratio of 40% ($2,000/$5,000).
How do I determine if a home is located within the property tax jurisdiction of the City of Houston? Visit the Harris County Appraisal District’s (HCAD) website at www.hcad.org and enter the home’s address. If HCAD shows the home is taxed by the City of Houston, the home will qualify for the program. You may also refer to this map (link to map here) as a general guide of the eligible areas of the City.
How is household income determined? Visit the HUD Income Calculator website, go to the “Start Calculating Income” section, and follow the instructions to calculate your household income.
May I take the homebuyer education course online? A HUD-approved homebuyer education course may be done online, as long as you complete a one-on-one homebuyer advising/counseling session with a HUD-approved counseling agency. Each applicant must obtain a Homebuyer Education Certificate through a HUD-approved counseling agency.
What if I need to sell my home before I have lived in it for five years? The loan will be forgiven at a rate of 20% for each full year of residency in the home. For example, if you receive assistance in the amount of $30,000, and complete three of the required five years, 60% or $18,000 of subsidy will be forgiven, leaving a balance owed of $12,000.
How long does the process take? Typically, a preliminary approval can be received within 72 business hours, with a full file approval completed within two weeks.
Am I required to work with an approved program lender? No, the program does not have an approved lender list. Applicants may choose any lender.
Ready to apply? Once you’ve been pre-approved with a lender and have taken the first-time homebuyers education course, as explained above, please gather all of the documents listed on the following Applicant Checklist form and call us at 832-394-6200 to submit your application.