Home Buying Assistance Ny
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SONYMA partners with nonprofit housing counseling agencies across New York State to help you navigate the home buying process and prepare for successful homeownership through one-on-one counseling, homebuyer education classes, workshops, and more
The HomeFirst Down Payment Assistance Program provides qualified homebuyers with up to $100,000 toward the down payment or closing costs on a 1-4 family home, a condominium, or a cooperative in one of the five boroughs of New York City.
Upon the successful completion of the Homebuyer Education class, prospective home buyesr will receive a certificate that verifies their eligibility for the forgivable loan of up to $100,000 towards the down payment or closing costs on a new home. The certificate is valid for six months, with a subsequent six-month renewal period. After receiving the certificate, prospective homebuyers begin the path to homeownership.
The median sales price of homes in New York state was $379,950 in January 2023. That was a decrease of 2.6% year-over-year, according to data from the New York State Association of REALTORS. But that figure covers a vast range across different locations within the Empire State.
For example, the median price in St. Lawrence County that month was $138,750. But average home prices jump to $294,250 in the Bronx and $675,000 in Queens. That means where you buy in New York may be way more important than statewide averages.
In addition, most programs allow you to use gifted money or down payment assistance (DPA) to cover your down payment and closing costs. Depending on the mortgage loan you choose, you could potentially get into your new house with minimal cash out of pocket.
In addition to the offerings below, borrowers will also find special FHA and VA loans with SONYMA. Those who purchase a fixer-upper in a designated area may qualify for one of its home renovation or revitalization loans.
The Achieving the Dream program offers low-income buyers a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with just 3% down. You can pair this program with other grants and subsidies. In fact, the minimum cash contribution from the buyer is only 1% out of pocket. The rest can come from down payment assistance (excluding co-op buyers).
The Low Interest Rate program offers a mortgage loan with a 3% down payment requirement at a competitive interest rate. Like other SONYMA programs, this one comes with a 120-day rate lock for the purchase of existing homes, and a 240-day rate lock for homes under construction.
This mortgage program may offer low-income borrowers their most affordable monthly payment. It combines a 30-year-fixed rate loan with down payment and closing cost assistance. Additionally, this program is not limited to first-time home buyers. Existing homeowners can also use the Conventional Plus loan to refinance their current mortgages.
The HomeFirst Down Payment Assistance Program is administered by the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD). It offers qualified buyers up to $100,000 toward the down payment and closing costs on a 1-4 unit family home, condo, or cooperative in one of the five boroughs of New York City.
The Bishop Sheen Ecumenical Housing Foundation website offers closing cost assistance, as well as various home buyer education courses. But the site provides no further details. So call (585) 461-4263 for more information.
The City of Rochester's Home Purchase Assistance Program Grant (HPAP) provides down payment and closing cost assistance to first-time buyers who meet program requirements. Grants of up to $3,000 are available for closing cost assistance to first-time buyers who are income eligible.
This program helps to promote homeownership in Troy for low income homebuyers. Eligible applicants must have an annual household taxable income at the time of application (and purchase) under 80% of the HUD area median income.
Homebuyers who use a SONYMA loan to purchase their first home can take advantage of their Downpayment Assistance Loan (DPAL). DPAL offers funds to cover 3% of the home purchase price or $3,000 (whichever is higher, up to a maximum of $15,000).
SONYMA Neighborhood Revitalization ProgramWith the Neighborhood Revitalization program from SONYMA, qualified buyers who are looking to purchase a vacant property may be eligible to receive up to $20,000 to renovate a qualified 1-4 unit home in Albany, Rensselaer, Schenectady, Warren or Washington counties. This opportunity can be combined with other down payment programs and SONYMA loans and has income limits up to 150% HUD Area Median Income guidelines. Review the SONYMA website for more information.
City of Albany Home Acquisition Program (HAP)When funds are available, the Albany Community Development Agency provides up to $10,000 (5% of the purchase price) in deferred loans for eligible costs of acquiring and repairing a 1-4 unit owner-occupied homes throughout the city of Albany.
Town of Colonie Down Payment ProgramDepending on funding availability, the Town of Colonie provides downpayment and closing costs for the purchase of a single family home within the town of Colonie, village of Colonie and village of Menands.
Monroe County's Home Improvement Program (HIP) provides grants or grant/low-interest loans to income-eligible homeowners for home repairs and improvements in the suburban towns and villages excluding the City of Rochester and Towns of Greece and Irondequoit. Residents of the city of Rochester, Greece and Irondequoit should contact their respective municipality: City (585) 428-6963; Greece (585) 723-2384; Irondequoit (585) 336-6021.
Monroe County's First-time Home Buyer Program is administered by The Housing Council. The program provides one-time grants for down payment and closing cost assistance to income-eligible first-time home buyers who purchase homes in the suburban towns and villages of Monroe County.
The program also provides a full range of counseling services to help buyers achieve the American Dream of home ownership, including credit repair, budgeting, mortgage products and savings programs, pre-purchase and post-closing assistance. For additional information, contact The Housing Council First Time Homebuyer - Click Here or call 585-546-3700.
The HomeFirst program provides up to $40,000 in assistance for down payment or closing costs. The program offers assistance in the form of a forgivable loan. The loan is forgiven if the buyer occupies the home for ten consecutive years. The property must be located within New York City and can be a one-to-four-unit family home, condominium, or a cooperative apartment. Buyers must be able to contribute some money toward the purchase to qualify for assistance.
The NeighborhoodLIFT program provides up to $20,000 in support for down payments to all buyers (not just first-time homebuyers). To qualify for assistance, the property must be located in Brooklyn, the Bronx, or Queens. The program offers assistance in the form of a five-year forgivable loan. A percentage of the loan is forgiven each year that the buyer occupies the home. If the buyer moves before the five-year mark, any remaining balance of the loan is due immediately. All applicants must take an approved homebuyer education course.
Only homes located in Brooklyn qualify for this grant program, which offers up to $20,000 in assistance. The assistance is provided by the New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) agency. This grant is only available to first-time homebuyers who must also be able to contribute some of their savings towards the downpayment and closing cost.
The Achieving the Dream Program is geared towards first-time homebuyers who have low incomes. Buyers will receive reduced interest rates and a lower down payment on a 30-year loan. The mortgage can be used to purchase and renovate a one or two-family home.
The Neighborhood Revitalization Program is designed to revitalize distressed communities. The program provides cash and mortgage finance assistance to help homebuyers purchase and renovate homes (one to four-family dwellings) in eligible communities. (e.g., the Bronx, Queens, Staten Island, Queens).
The Graduate to Homeownership Program is marketed towards new college graduates. The programs offer down payment assistance and favorable interest rates. Buyers must be looking to purchase their first home in New York communities scheduled for downtown revitalization. These cities include Elmira, Glens Falls, Jamestown, Oneonta, Oswego, Plattsburgh, and others.
SONYMA offers down payment assistance loans, which can be combined with any of their mortgage programs. Essentially the down payment is set up as a second mortgage. No monthly payment and no interest is charged on the loan, and it is forgivable after ten years if the borrower maintains their SONYMA financing and continuing living in the property during that time. The maximum down payment assistance is $3,000 or 3% of the loan value (up to $15,000).
On a national level, buyers should first check with the Federal Housing Association (FHA) to figure out what programs they qualify for. Specifically, the FHA has various programs to help buyers with a down payment! Additionally, the Department of Housing and Development is another organization that has many programs in place to allow first-time buyers to be able to buy their very own home and get over the hurdles of down payment costs.
Most first-time homebuyers have heard of an FHA loan, as this is one of the best lending options for first-time homebuyers who may have lower credit scores. If approved for an FHA loan, the buyer makes a down payment as low as 3.5%. The FHA will insure loans for buyers who have credit scores as low as 500, but they require a 10% down payment. The only downside to an FHA is that the loan requires mortgage insurance, which must be maintained throughout the life of the loan and cannot be canceled. 59ce067264