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CalHFA's Dream For All Shared Appreciation Loan is a down payment assistance program for first-generation and first-time homebuyers that provides 20% towards the down payment and/or closing costs.
PROGRAM UPDATE AS OF JANUARY 2024: Program Guidelines have been officially released and funds are scheduled to be available in April 2024. Funds will go quick, so reach out to our team to start your pre-approval today!
The CalHFA Dream For All Shared Appreciation Loan Program is a program designed to assist low and moderate-income families in California in achieving their dream of homeownership. The Dream For All program provides a loan for 20% of the home purchase price to be used for the down payment and closing costs. CalHFA also provides the remaining 80% 1st mortgage through JVM. Upon the sale of the home, transfer of title, payoff of the first loan, or 30-year loan maturity, the homeowner will pay back the 20% loan amount plus 15% to 20% of any appreciation in the value of the home, depending on income level.
This program is intended to help make homeownership attainable for first generation and first-time homebuyers.
A first-generation homebuyer is someone (1) who has not owned a home in the last 7 years and (2) whose parents do not own a home (or, if deceased, did not own a home at the time of their passing). Homebuyers who were at any time placed in foster care or out of home institutional care are exempt from this requirement.
CalHFA first-time homebuyers are defined as someone who has not owned a primary residence in the last 3 years, or someone who has never owned a home before.
At least one applicant must be a first-generation homebuyer. Any additional applicants on the loan must be first-time homebuyers.
Income limits to use this program vary by county in which the home is being purchased. Check your specific county limits here.
This loan is for single-unit, primary residences only, and you are expected to occupy the home within 60 days of purchase.
You must complete two levels of homebuyer education counseling and obtain a certificate of completion through an eligible homebuyer counseling organization. This is a one-time cost of $99 and can be completed online, or in person.
Depending on your income level the minimum credit score requirement is between 660 and 680.
The Dream loan will provide a loan for 20% of the purchase price to be used for the down payment or closing costs. This is an interest-free loan; only the principal amount will need to be repaid, plus 15% to 20% of the home’s appreciation. For example, if you were to purchase a home for $500,000, CalHFA would give you a loan for $100,000 to be used for the down payment. When the time comes, you will only be required to pay back $100,000 (along with 15% to 20% of the home’s appreciation). The 2nd loan, of $400,000, will make up the other 80% of the home price and will have an interest rate determined by CalHFA, meaning your monthly payment will be going towards both principal and interest.
The CalHFA Dream for All program makes homeownership more attainable. Unlike rent which can fluctuate yearly, a fixed rate mortgage remains the same for the duration of the loan (30 years). By purchasing now, you are able to stabilize your monthly payment.
Once you buy with the CalHFA Dream Program and depending on your income level and the market where your home is located, you have the potential to pay less in income tax, because the interest paid on your mortgage may be able to be deducted from your taxable income. Be sure to consult a tax expert for any questions or concerns.
As you make your monthly mortgage payments and pay down the balance of your home loan, your home equity gradually builds. This is similar to investing money. Unlike with renting where there is no return or investment on your money, the money paid each month toward your mortgage builds your home’s equity and can be used in the future to help with the down payment of your next home, make home improvements, or cover other large life expenses.
With this program, CalHFA does take back a share of the appreciation of your home, however you are still getting a majority of this appreciation.
With a traditional home purchase, the down payment amount becomes instant equity. For many this means starting off with anywhere from 3.5% to 20% (or more) in equity. However, with the CalHFA Dream For All loan, because the down payment amount is comprised of a loan, you are potentially starting out with 0% equity.
Depending on the price of the home the sum of your monthly mortgage payment, utilities, and home repairs could be more than the monthly cost of renting even with the Dream For All loan. This is why it is important to get pre-approved to see what kind of monthly payment and home price you can afford.
When renting there is always the flexibility to chose not to renew your lease, allowing you to move or relocate as you please. When you own a home, deciding to move can be harder and take longer as you often can not move until you either can sell or rent your existing home. Selling your home can often take several months and when you sell, you will owe back 15% to 20% of the homes appreciation.
The best way to determine whether a CalHFA Dream For All loan makes the most sense for you and your situation is to talk to one of our mortgage experts at JVM Lending. Our experts can walk you through monthly payment scenarios, give you current interest rates, and discuss any other questions or concerns you might have.
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