Down Payment Assistance Changes: Did You Wait TOO Long to Buy a House?

Real Estate Agent with Casa Latino Four Corners, REALTOR, CDPE

If you are a First-Time Buyer in Orange County, Florida, and were planning to get a large chunk of money from the County, that "large chunk" just dwindled appreciably yesterday.  What this means to you First-Time Buyers is that you will continue to be able to access funds from Orange County Down Payment Assistance/State Housing Initiative Partnership (SHIP) if you qualify--but there will be less funds available per Buyer/Family. 

Well, here it is:  The Powers-That-Be have made and enacted the dreaded changes to Orange County's Down Payment Assistance Program for First-Time HomeBuyers...And It Just Happened Yesterday.

I just received an email letter regarding the new program changes.  The changes to the Program have come about because our State Legislature used about $6 million that was to go toward funding the Program to balance the State budget.  There ARE current funds available (I know this because we have been successfully getting funds from Orange County DPA this year to help families buy their first home!) but, in an effort to stretch those funds, the County has decided to reduce the funds available to Buyers.  Those changes are outlined below.

Orange County Down Payment Assistance/State Housing Initiative Partnership (SHIP) New Rules

June 23, 2009

Notice of Program Change

To Whom It May Concern: 

"State budget action requires that we make changes to the current funding levels that will allow us to continue assisting households with DPA through 2010.  DPA program changes to be implemented are:

Very Low Income      $25,000

Low Income                $17,500

Moderate Income      $5,000

These changes were reviewed and approved by Orange County's Affordable Housing Advisory Board and the Board of County Commissioners approved these changes to the Down Payment Assistance Program on June 23, 2009. These changes are effective immediately."

This is only an excerpt from the email letter I received & if you would like a copy of the actual email, just email me with your request and I'll forward a copy. 


If you're interested in BUYING a Central Florida home and you're a FIRST-TIME BUYER, click:

Find out if you qualify for a Government-Sponsored Down Payment Assistance Program. 

If you Buy a Home that is in an FHA or VA-approved community, there is the possibility of Buying for NO- or LOW-DOWN PAYMENT.  Also, there is the possibility of FREE MONEY from the City of Orlando (please see their website link:  ) or from Orange County/SHIP.  Up to $25,000 of FREE MONEY available.   ** Of course, there are income guidelines and major hoops that you have to jump through to qualify--but go ahead and find out if you can possibly qualify or not. 

As a REALTOR(r) in the Central Florida area, I am able to SHOW and SELL ANY LISTING FROM ANY COMPANY.  Plus, YOU pay me no commission; the SELLER typically pays my commission and you get superlative representation.   

Good Information for Buyers & Sellers Located at:

Search for Homes Myself on My Computer in the Privacy of My Home at:

Best wishes in your home search!

--Lisa Spalding

Watson Realty Corp., REALTORs

"How To" Buy a Home Report--FREE for Buyers                                                                             


How To Buy A Lovely Home
In Orlando With Zero Down or Low Down Payment

Click here:





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Rob Arnold
Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc. - Altamonte Springs, FL
Metro Orlando Full Service - Investor Friendly & F

It's always painful when they make these cutbacks.  It makes it just that much tougher for us to find qualified buyers.  Seems like nobody has any money except foreigners paying all cash. 

At the same time, I find it a little frustrating that a person making up to $72,000 per year could get $35,000 in free grant money (and up to $100K in free money in Seminole County).  To me that wasn't right.  $72,000 isn't a low income person - that is nearly double what the average Floridian earns.

Jun 24, 2009 02:47 AM #1
Lisa Spalding
Casa Latino Four Corners, REALTOR, CDPE - Longwood, FL

:)  Rob--Thanks for the comment.  And, you're right:  It DOES make it harder to locate a qualified Buyer.  Sad, but true. 

Jun 25, 2009 11:56 PM #2
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