Unfortunately, for many Home Buyers, coming up with the standard 20% down payment on a home can be close to impossible to do. Heck, with home prices where they are , it is hard just to even come up with the FHA standard of 3.5% down. 

The good news is, you don’t have to wait another 5 or 10 years and struggle to save that kind of savings. Instead, you can take advantage of CalHFA: California Down Payment Assistance. This Down Payment Assistance Program is a fantastic product and solution for those that do not have the down payment required.​

CalHFA in not funded by the government, so there is no need to for them to request funding every year. Instead it is a self-supported State agency, focused on helping prospective homeowners buy their homes by offering low-interest, and low down payment loan

In general, to qualify for any CalHFA program, you must:

  • Be an American citizen, permanent resident, or other qualified alien status
  • Be a First Time Home Buyer ( either you never owned a home, or haven't had a mortgage in the last 3 years)
  • Live in the home for the entire term of the loan (unless of course, you sell or refinance)
  • You must be applying for a single-family home, Condo, or Townhome
  • Have a minimum Credit Score of 640+ or 660+
  • Complete a home buyer education counseling course and then provide a certificate of completion to your approved lender

You must meet income limits of FHA first mortgage, VA or USDA. Because the income limits were based on your household size, and complicated to understand. We developed a Smart system to help you determine if you meet the income requirements for CalHFA and other down payment programs.


Teacher Extra Credit Program

In addition to the CalHFA program, Qualified Teachers, education staff members, and administrators that work in qualified schools in California can qualify for the Extra Credit teacher program

This program offers deferred credit loan that ranges from $7,500 to $15,000, depending on the area where the home is bought. Most counties in Southern California are considered high cost, and qualify for the $15,000. 

This loan can be used for additional down payment or even closing cost assistance, and must be combined with a CalHFA first mortgage loan.

To qualify for the Extra Credit Teacher Program, you must: 

  • Be a first-time homebuyer
  • Occupy the home as a primary residence
  • Be currently employed in a county/continuation or High Priority school in California
  • You must intend to work in such schools for three more years from the start of the loan
  • Buy a house that meets the sale price limits for the home’s county
  • You cannot apply directly on your own.

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The CalHFA FHA offers financing up to 105% of the purchase price or appraised value whichever is less. To make buying a home more affordable, down payment and closing cost assistance may be obtained when combining this CalHFA first mortgage with CalHFA junior loan programs.

No first time home buyer requirement however you cannot own any other homes at the close of escrow. Minimum FICO score 640 or 660 for Manufactured Homes. First time homebuyer course must be completed and certificate signed, then delivered to us.

  • Online: http://ehomeamerica.org/calhfa
  • In Person: http://www.calhfa.ca.gov/homebuyer/calhfa_neighborworks_america.pdf or http://hud.gov/offices/hsg/sfh/hcc/hcs.cfm?weblistaction=summary
  • Refer to CalHFA's income limits established for the county in which the property is located. http://www.calhfa.ca.gov/homeownership/limits/income/income-moderateFHA.pdf
  • Refer to CalHFA's published sales price limits for the county in which the property is located. http://www.calhfa.ca.gov/homeownership/limits/salesprice/salesprice.pdf
  • Be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident alien or other qualified alien.
  • Existing single family, one-unit residence, including condominium/PUDs and Manufactured Housing(Certain Restrictions Apply) Leaseholds/Land Trusts are not allowed with this program.
  • CalHFA offers the California Homebuyer's Downpayment Assistance Program (CHDAP) which can be used for down payment and/or closing cost assistance.
  • CalHFA has partnered with over 300 local agencies under the Affordable Housing Partnership Program (AHPP) which can be combined with the CalHFA FHA for down payment and closing cost.
  • Homebuyer education is required for each CalHFA borrower.

Learn More