How a First Time Homebuyer Can Buy a Home with No Money Down

Mortgage and Lending with US Bank NMLS: 22343

How a First Time Homebuyer Can Buy a Home with No Money Down



-Some don't need the ocean view.

-Some don't need the 4-car finished garage.

-Some don't need the extra bedroom/home office.

-Some don't need the picket fence or landscaped lawn.


-Some do need their first home and don't have a down payment.

-Some do need a lender credit to help with closing costs.

-Some do live, or will live, in eligible census tracts.

-Some do believe in the American Dream.


If you've been conditioned to think that only eligible veterans can finance a home without a down payment, or if you've been told that in order to purchase a property without at least a 3% or 3.5% down payment, you need to obtain a grant, bond or other type of down payment assistance, you may also want to believe in the American Dream.  The American Dream home loan, that is.


In it's best use, the American Dream loan allows a non-veteran buyer in certain price points and certain census tracts to purchase a home without a down payment.  A 30-year fixed first mortgage will go to 97% of the purchase price and then U.S. Bank will provide a payment-free, forgivable loan for up to 3% of the price of the home (to $10,000 and sometimes this number will be a little higher or lower).  Mortgage insurance (PMI) is lender paid, so the new owner doesn't have an additional monthly payment, and the American Dream program has a fixed rate as well.


There are some important things to know about the American Dream mortgage: 


  • The American Dream Mortgage is for first-time buyers only and the property must become the buyer's primary residence.  No second homes or rental properties are allowed. 
  • The buyer's income must be equal to, or below, the median income in the area in which he/she intends to buy OR the property itself must be located in a low- or moderate-income census tract, in which case there is no income restriction for the buyer(s).  One can quickly look up any address by following this link:
  • Buyers on the American Dream Mortgage must have a 640 minimum FICO score in most cases, however some of the credit guidelines are flexible and "make sense," in order to assist those whose credit profiles may be more recently established. 
  • Buyers must complete a course on homebuying, and we can provide a list of eligible programs.  You don't need to go it alone!
  • Buyers using the American Dream program must contribute at least $1000 of their own funds to the transaction.

Now I realize that this is a lot of information and that it might seem really stressful or intimidating to attempt to figure out if this program is a fit.  Don't worry!  I'm here to help answer any questions, so if you're currently renting and have decided you're ready to buy or if you're a real estate agent who has clients that might benefit from a low- or no-down payment option that differs from the ones with which you're already familiar, get in touch at any time!


Dream on!


Rob Spinosa

Mortgage Loan Officer

NMLS:  22343

415-367-5959 Cell/Text



*The views and opinions expressed on this site about work-related matters are my own, have not been reviewed or approved by U.S. Bank and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of U.S. Bank.  In no way do I commit U.S. Bank to any position on any matter or issue without the express prior written consent of U.S. Bank's Human Resources Department.

Comments (8)

John Pusa
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Crest - Glendale, CA
Your All Time Realtor With Exceptional Service

Hello Rob Spinosa very good helpful report for how a first time homebuyer can buy a home with no money down.

Sep 24, 2023 10:50 AM
Bill Salvatore - East Valley
Arizona Elite Properties - Chandler, AZ
Realtor - 602-999-0952 / em:

Great information. Thanks for sharing, enjoy your weekend. Bill

Salvatore Arizona Elite Properties.

Sep 24, 2023 11:09 AM
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Rob here in CT we have a state bonded program, CT Housing Finance Authority (CHFA) which allows the borrower to borrow all of the down payment and closing cost.  And they recently changed the asset limitation to no limitation.  So the borrower keeps all their funds regardless of how much they have.  There use to be a $10,000 limitation.

Sep 24, 2023 11:13 AM
Ed (Edward) Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Down payment assistance and grants are always appreciated by buyers, but the current market doesn't allow many to take advantage of them.

Sep 24, 2023 04:02 PM
Bo Zivak
Zivak Realty Group - Nashville, TN
Nashville Real Estate Broker

This is fantastic advice for first-time homebuyers! Buying a home with no money down can seem like a daunting task, but your blog provides clear and practical insights. It's a valuable resource for those taking their first steps into homeownership. Great job!

Sep 25, 2023 12:52 AM
Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker
Great information, thanks for sharing.  I hope you have a great day.
Sep 25, 2023 01:58 AM
Joe Jackson
Keller Williams Capital Partners Realty - Columbus, OH
Clintonville and Central Ohio Real Estate Expert

It’s a great post. Thank you for sharing!


Have a super fantastic week!

Joe Jackson, Realtor-KWCP

Sep 25, 2023 09:58 AM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

is this a national program or something just in California - More people shouold be spreading the word about this one

Sep 26, 2023 01:01 PM
Rob Spinosa

This program is available through most of the United States.  There are several metro areas that have additional benefits, including; Las Vegas, Oakland, Minneapolis, Los Angeles, Fresno, Riverside/Palm Springs, Little Rock, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Sacramento and San Diego.

Sep 26, 2023 01:28 PM