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Learning About South Carolina Down Payment Assistance Programs

The process of homeownership is a satisfying experience but there are many who put off home buying due to lack of funds. You must know that the down payment and closing costs are excessive that it can sometimes throw you off-guard. However, if you know the right assistance program, you might have a chance to pull it off.

There are many DPA (Down Payment Assistance) programs that you can consider. You have to learn each program so you will know the right one for your needs. DPA programs are designed to help low to moderate-income families and individuals purchase a home. To get started, you should know this down payment assistance guide by OnQFinancial:

National first-time homebuyer programs
The national programs help first-time homebuyers across the country make the leap. Here are some programs that you can consider:

• FHA (Federal Housing Administration) loans: FHA loans are the most popular type of

loan because you can qualify with a credit score of 580 for a 3.5% down payment. If your credit score is below 500, you will need a 10% down payment.
• VA (Veterans Affairs) loans: this loan is best for current US military servicemen and their eligible beneficiaries. If you qualify, you will see benefits like no minimum credit score and no down payment. However, you are likely to pay a VA funding fee.
• USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) loans: USDA loan aims to inspire rural and suburban homeownership by offering 0 down payment mortgages especially to lower-income buyers.

South Carolina first-time homebuyers programs
While there are national programs, there are statewide programs that you can also consider. Here are some programs that you can consider specifically targeted in South Carolina:
• SC Housing: this program offers 30-year fixed-rate loans with the help of participating

lenders including conventional, FHA and the USDA mortgages. The requirements differ by loan program. As for the properties, it includes single-family homes, townhomes, modular homes, and lender-approved condos.
• Repayable down payment assistance: this is in combination with loan programs available through SC Housing. For households that earn above 80% of AMI (Area Median Income), they are eligible for repayable assistance up to $6,000.
• Forgivable down payment assistance: for households that earn below the 80% AMI, $6,000 cash assistance is a forgivable second mortgage. This means that there is no charged interest and no due payments. After ten years of living in the home, the loan is forgiven.
• SC Mortgage Tax Credit Program: for qualified taxpayers, this program provides them with an annual federal income tax credit up to $2,000 versus the mortgage interest paid – whether they itemise taxes or not.

Now that you know the programs, the next step is to apply. Although the SC Housing handles these programs, local lenders will do the paperwork. They will also have different qualifying guidelines. With this, it is important to shop around and compare the offers from lenders to get the best terms. If you want to learn more, you should visit the SC Housing website. It is also better to consult the lenders who participate in the programs.