"People Focussed. Performance Driven"

First Time Homebuyer Funds (SHIP)

2013 Down Payment Assistance


Contact Geraldine Green
Senior Housing Services Specialist
850-606-1917
GreenG@leoncountyfl.gov

Office of Human Services & Community Partnerships918 Railroad Avenue
Tallahassee, Fl 32310

FAX: 850-606-1901


Applicants who are First Time Home Buyers are those persons (and their spouse) who have not owned an interest in a dwelling in the past three years; is a displaced homemaker that has only owned with a spouse; is a single parent that has only owned a home with a former spouse while married; has only owned a principal residence not permanently affixed to a permanent foundation in accordance with applicable regulations; has only owned a property that was not in compliance with state, local, or model building codes and cannot be brought into compliance for less that cost of constructing a permanent structure.

 

 

Maximum Sales/Purchase Price for new and existing homes is $204,000.00.

Income Limits for eligible recipients are those that are published by US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) as adjusted for family size. Extremely-low income is 30% or less of median family income, very low income is 31% to 50% of median family income, low income is 51% to 80% of median family income, and moderate income is 81% to 120% of median family income.

Overview

All SHIP program recipients shall be either extremely-low, very-low, low- or moderate-income residents who will purchase in the unincorporated areas of Leon County. Each service to be delivered through the SHIP program will be in the form of a deferred payment loan or grant to each recipient. Eligible units shall be either "stick-built" structures or modular homes with the Department of Economic Opportunity insignia and comply with Chapter 553, Florida Statutes, or manufactured/mobile homes built as of 1994.  In any instance where a manufactured house (mobile home) is assisted with SHIP funds, the Owner must have retired the manufactured home (mobile home) title with the Tax Collector's Office by surrendering it to real estate. The title "is retired" and the manufactured home (mobile home) is inextricably bound to the land. The cost to perform title retirement shall be classified as closing costs. Leon County has the following three down payment assistance strategies available to first time homebuyers:

  • Down Payment Assistance for Existing Units Without Repair

The objective of this strategy is to promote home ownership in the unincorporated Leon County. SHIP funds shall be used to assist extremely-low, very-low, low-, and moderate-income first-time home buyers with down payment and closing costs associated with the purchase of a home. The maximum shall be $7,500 and shall be in the form of a SHIP deferred payment loan at 0%. The term of the SHIP mortgage shall coincide with the first mortgage.  Re-payment will be made upon default. Default occurs upon the first of any of the following events: 1). home buyer sells, transfer or disposes of the assisted unit (by either sale, transfer, bankruptcy or foreclosure, etc.) 2). home buyer no longer occupies the unit as his/her principal residence; 3). home buyer dies, or if a married couple, the survivor dies; However, an heir to your home who acquires the property upon your death may apply to the Leon County Housing Services Division to be considered for assumption of the Agreement terms; or 4). if the home buyer refinances the home without having met the conditions for exemption as describe in Subordination policy, a copy of which is available upon request.

Applicants who are first time home buyers are those persons (and their spouse) who have not owned an interest in their dwelling in the past three years; is a displaced homemaker that has only owned with a spouse; is a single parent that has only owned a home with a former spouse while married; has only owned a principal residence not permanently affixed to a permanent foundation in accordance with applicable regulations; has only owned a property that was not in compliance with state, local, or model building codes and cannot be brought into compliance for less than that cost of constructing a permanent structure.

Applicants must have the ability to obtain a first mortgage loan from a lender, must be able to contribute an amount equal to 1% of the sales price towards down payment or closing costs and must purchase their homes in the unincorporated Leon County. Assistance shall be made available to income-qualified applicants on a first come, first served basis. An applicant shall be considered in line for services from the time the Housing and Human Services Division, or its designee, receives written notification from the lender that the client's first mortgage loan application has been approved. At that point, funds are reserved for the applicant for no more than 90 days. If applications are received at the same time, priority will be given to the family with the lowest income.  Leon County will be placed in second place behind the first mortgage for all Down Payment Assistance transactions unless authorization is received from the Leon County Division of Housing Services.

  • Down Payment Assistance for Existing Units Needing Repair or New Construction

The objective of this strategy is to promote home ownership while preserving existing housing stock and to promote construction of new housing stock. SHIP funds shall be used to assist income-eligible first-time home buyers with down payment, closing costs, and/or to make necessary repairs to the home. The maximum award towards the purchase of an existing structure needing repair shall be $15,000 for extremely-low & very low-income households and $10,000 for low-income households. Moderate-income households shall be considered only after the list of extremely-low, very-low, and low-income households has been exhausted. The maximum award to moderate-income households shall be $7,500 towards the purchase of both an existing housing unit needing repair and a newly constructed housing unit.  The moderate-income award amounts include the down payment assistance with the balance to be applied toward the needed repairs.

All funds expended under this strategy shall be in the form of a deferred payment loan at 0%.  The term of the SHIP mortgage shall coincide with the first mortgage. Re-payment will be made upon default. Default occurs upon the first of any of the following events: 1). home buyer sells, transfer or disposes of the assisted unit (by either sale, transfer, bankruptcy or foreclosure, etc.) 2). home buyer no longer occupies the unit as his/her principal residence; 3). home buyer dies, or if a married couple, the survivor dies; However, an heir to your home who acquires the property upon your death may apply to the Leon County Housing Services Division to be considered for assumption of the Agreement terms; or 4). if the home buyer refinances the home without having met the conditions for exemption as describe in Subordination policy, a copy of which is available upon request.

Applicants must have the ability to obtain a first mortgage loan from a lender, must be able to contribute and amount equal to 1% of the sales price towards the down payment or closing costs and must purchase their homes in the unincorporated Leon County. Assistance shall be made available to income-qualified applicants on a first come, first served basis.  An applicant shall be considered in line for services from the time the Housing Services Division or its designee, receives written notification from the lender that the client's first mortgage loan application has been approved.  At that point, funds are reserved for the applicant for no more than 90 days.  If applications are received at the same time, priority will be given to the family with the lowest income.

  • Down Payment Assistance with Self-Help

The County shall seek to enter into a partnership with a non-profit sponsor who is engaged in the provision or construction of decent, affordable housing using volunteer labor. The essence of this strategy is "Sweat Equity" which shall be performed by the potential home owner towards the construction of his or her home. Only very low and low income applicant shall be deemed eligible for assistance under this strategy.  The County shall announce the availability of funding for this strategy in the Tallahassee Democrat days prior to the beginning of the application period. 

In reviewing proposals from potential sponsors, the County shall consider the following criteria:

1. Applicable experience in providing  affordable housing while integrating self-help or sweat equity into the program.

2. Compliance with certification, licensing or other professional or administrative requirements.

3. Must be an equal opportunity housing provider and does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, color, age handicap, religion, national origin, familial status, marital status, or sexual orientation.

4. Must agree to follow standard SHIP rules for income determinations under 24 CFR, Part 5.

5. Eligible properties or housing units must comply with the Building Construction Standards in Chapter 553, Florida Statutes.

6. Potential sponsors who employ personnel from WAGES and Workforce Development Initiatives programs shall be given preferences.

7. Must provide housing counseling and/or training directly or indirectly through an established partnership with an organization that provides such training.  Such training should include Money and Credit Management, Predatory Lending and Home Maintenance at the minimum.

8. Preference will be given to nonprofit sponsors that maximize the benefits to the client and the program by using volunteers, contributions and partnerships effectively.

Eligible sponsors who are recipients of SHIP funds will be required to contractually commit to comply with policies, rules and regulations pertaining to the SHIP program, and where appropriate, other programs such as Community Development Block Grant (CDBG). The County will strongly encourage sponsors to attend appropriate SHIP and CDBG, training workshops that may be sponsored by the Florida Housing Finance Corporation, Department of Community Affairs, Florida Housing Coalition or the County.

Funding is limited to $25,000 per unit for extremely-low & very low-income households and $15,000 per unit for low-income persons, the limit for low-income persons with disabilities (as defined in Rule 67-37.002(13)) or low-income elderly persons (60 years or older) is $25,000. These funds can be used for down payment, closing costs, and mortgage subsidy.  Recipients are selected based on compliance with all eligibility requirements of the SHIP program, and thereafter served on a first-come, first-served basis.

All funds expended under this strategy shall be in the form of a deferred payment loan to the home buyer at 0%.  The term of the SHIP mortgage shall coincide with the first mortgage.  Re-payment will be made upon default. Default occurs upon the first of any of the following events: 1). home buyer sells, transfer or disposes of the assisted unit (by either sale, transfer, bankruptcy or foreclosure, etc.) 2). home buyer no longer occupies the unit as his/her principal residence; 3). home buyer dies, or if a married couple, the survivor dies; However, an heir to your home who acquires the property upon your death may apply to the Leon County Housing Services Division to be considered for assumption of the Agreement terms; or 4). if the home buyer refinances the home without having met the conditions for exemption as describe in Subordination policy, a copy of which is available upon request.

Funding Sources

(1) SHIP (State Housing Initiative Partnership)

(2) HFA (Housing Finance Authority)