Buying your first home is exciting and a little overwhelming. It may leave you with questions on what to do and where to go for assistance.
As we step into 2024, the real estate landscape in Florida offers many opportunities for first-time buyers.
The Phil Aitken Home Team has worked with many first time buyers and programs over the past 13 years. We are confident in serving our clients with the information for great options for what program will work best for them.
We are going to share 8 Florida First-Time Buyer Programs. This will provide you with a roadmap to understanding real estate transactions. We’re not including ourselves on this list because we know we’re not the best fit for everyone. We want you to understand your options. That’s why we’ve created this list to help you decide what’s best for you.
Best First Time Buyer Programs in Florida for 2024
- FHA Loans
- Hometown Heroes Program
- Florida HFA Preferred Conventional Loan Program
- Florida Assist Loan Program
- USDA Loans
- Florida Housing Mortgage Credit Certificate Program
- HFA Preferred Grant
- VA Loans
To help you in your decision, here is some information about each program.
Pros: Low down payment requirements and you don’t need a high credit score for approval
Cons: Larger down payment is needed for credit scores under 580
Eligibility: Little as a 3.5% down payment and your credit score must be 500 or above
View Nexa Mortgage website for FHA loans
Hometown Heroes Program
Pros: 5% assistance on total loan amount with 0% non-amortizing, 30-year deferred
Cons: Repayment has to occur if you sell the home, transfer the deed, pay off the mortgage, refinance, or no longer live in the home
Eligibility: Employment, Primary residence, First time home buyer, homebuyer education course,a dn income limit
Florida HFA Preferred Conventional Loan Program
Pros: Cheap mortgage insurance premiums and you can automatically qualify the borrower for an assist loan
Cons: No direct down payment benefits
Eligibility: For first mortgages only
View Florida HFA website
Florida Assist Loan Program
Pros: $7,500 down payment assistance and payments are deferred till the first loan is paid off and it’s not your primary residence
Cons: Repayment process will be extended longer than the original loan
Eligibility: Must have an initial mortgage to apply
Pros: Little monthly income and savings for a comfortable down payment for veterans
Cons: If you are qualified for a conventional mortgage, you can’t get one
Eligibility: Adjusted household income can’t extend beyond 115% of median income for thee area and must buy home within an eligible rural area
Florida Housing Mortgage Credit Certificate Program
Pros: Reduce your federal taxes up to $2,000/year from mortgage interest paid
Cons: Limited qualifications
Eligibility: First time buyers will qualify
HFA Preferred Grant
Pros: Doesn’t need to be repaid and they can help pay for your down payment and closing costs
Cons: Doesn’t apply to all borrowers
Eligibility: Must be applying for HFA Preferred PLUS Loan
Pros: Up to 100% loan coverage of your home’s value, lower closing costs, and no private mortgage insurance
Cons: Application process can be drawn out and must pay a VA funding fee
Eligibility: Current member or former military member or a member’s spouse or beneficiary and credit score must be 620 or higher
View VA Loans website
When choosing the best first time buyer program, it comes down to which one serves your needs and requirements.
The journey to homeownership is a big financial decision that requires time and understanding details. This list serves as a guide as you dive into what you need to get your dream home.
When buying your first home, it is important to have insights that will help you be well-informed.
May the doors of your new home open to a future filled with joy, prosperity, and the fulfillment of your dreams.
To learn more about the home buying process, check out our video on Understanding the Home buying process.