Aspiring homeowners say their number one hurdle is the down payment. Down Payment Resource (DPR), an online service that is directly integrated into the Northwest Multiple Listing Service Matrix system and client portal, provides a list of potential financial programs available for specific listings.
DPR tracks and monitors homebuyer assistance programs to bring hard-to-find programs to the forefront. Northwest MLS has partnered with DPR to bring the latest information about these programs to help “turn home searchers in homeowners.”
The company monitors around 2,500 programs across the country, including 80 or so from 40 different housing agencies across Washington state. They estimate 75% of all active residential listings in the MLS database are eligible for at least one, if not many, of the available programs. (Northwest MLS member-subscribers can learn more and view an introductory webinar via a link on the MLS website.)
Looking back on 2021, DPR identified its most popular blog posts. They believe these posts reflect a continuing desire for homeownership, even during a pandemic as buyers look for alternatives and guidance in a tight market.
The five leading topics were:
1. Is down payment assistance for everyone?
The buyer and the property must meet certain criteria. Homebuyers are advised to invest time to investigate the options for their personal situation..
2. You don’t need 20 percent down to buy a new home. Here’s why.
Potential buyers need to know there are alternatives to putting 20% down. Low down payment loans and a variety of homeownership programs, such as grants, forgivable loans, below-market first mortgages, tax credits and others are available across the country.
3. Manufactured homes, plus down payment assistance, could be an affordable housing solution.
Manufactured homes could be an affordable option for first-time buyers. There’s been an increase in the number of financing programs for these purchasers.
4. 6 Steps for buyers competing in a tight market
Competing in a tight market is especially challenging for first-time buyers. DPR outlines six ideas to help give newbies an edge.
5. Four New Year steps for every renter
The path to homeownership can be smoother and less stressful by following four easy steps, including taking advantage of financial literacy and education offerings.