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How California's New Programs Will Work For The First Time Home Buyer

Jul 24, 2008
The program launched by California's Governor reduces the interest rate on 30 year fixed mortgages to a below market rate. This is aimed to help the first time home buyer purchase targeted foreclosed homes in certain areas of California that has been hit hard by the foreclosure crisis. These homes are reduced to bargain prices to make them more attractive to the first time home buyer.

First time home buyers purchasing a home to live in as their primary residence are eligible for the program. Additionally they must be a U.S. citizen or legal resident and meet the credit, income and loan requirements of the program.

The program is run by the California Housing Finance Agency. The program has estimated $200 million to aid from 800 to 1,000 families looking to buy homes. Income limits apply as couples are allowed to earn up to $67,800 in some counties and up to $73, 560 in others; the limits to qualify increase for families with three or more persons.

Certain credit requirements apply as well as borrowers must have a credit score of at least 660 for a loan up to 95 percent of the value of the home. For homes that exceed 95 percent of the homes value the credit score must be over 680 to qualify.

Not every foreclosed home in the specific areas of California is eligible for this program. Foreclosed homes that are selected by Fannie Mae, CitiMortgage, HomEq Servicing and Wells Fargo Premier Asset Services are the only homes eligible for this program. Additionally the homes must meet all CalHFA and Fannie Mae inspections, health and safety codes and repairs requirements to qualify. There are currently almost 100 homes that are on the list of eligibility now in the counties of Stanislaus, San Joaquin and Merced and more are being added every week. All of the homes listed are priced at least 12 percent below their estimated value helping the first time buyer reach the dream of homeownership.

Potential buyers must be aware that they are required to complete a home buyer education counseling program. These programs are available over the Internet, in person or over the phone; however, a certificate of completion must be issued through Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac identified counseling administration agencies, mortgage insures or HUD approved buyer counselors to be valid. The lenders themselves also are subject to certain requirements including being CalHFA approved lenders.

Despite the qualifications and requirements both the potential first time home buyer as well as the neighborhoods of the eligible homes are thrilled with the program. Buyers in need are being united with homes in need and offering revitalization for many neighborhoods in the counties that have been hit hard by the foreclosure crisis in California.
About the Author
J Stromsteen has many years expertise in the finance, real estate, and insurance industry. She contributes to various websites such as First Time Home Buyer where you can find today's mortgage rates as well as a wealth of information on getting a First Time Home Buyers Loan .
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