Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Herget Offers Low-Income Home Buyers Assistance

Herget Bank announced today that it is participating in a statewide affordable housing program, known as Downpayment Plus®. The program focuses on providing financial assistance to qualified low-income home buyers in Illinois who need help in meeting the down payment requirements and closing costs associated with buying a home.

According to Marian Grebner, Vice President of Real Estate Lending at Herget Bank, “Qualified home buyers aspiring to purchase a home, but lacking sufficient funds to pay the down payment and closing costs, may qualify for a grant through Downpayment Plus®. These grants are designed specifically to help low-income home buyers.”

To qualify for grant consideration, an applicant’s aggregate annual household income must be 80 percent or less than the area’s median family income, adjusted for family size. For example, to qualify the annual household income of a family of four seeking to purchase a home in Peoria and surrounding counties cannot exceed $76,705.

Downpayment Plus® grants are funded by the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) of Chicago. The program is administered by the Illinois League of Financial Institutions and uses funds set aside from FHLB earnings for the purpose of assisting low-income families.

“The program’s income limits vary by household size,” Grebner said. “That’s why we recommend interested parties contact us for income limit details.”

Qualified families needing down payment and closing cost assistance must apply for home financing at Herget Bank and meet the institution’s loan underwriting criteria. A qualified household will be eligible to receive up to $6,000 in subsidized assistance for the acquisition of an owner-occupied one- or two-family dwelling. A home buyer must make a cash contribution of at least $1,000 toward the purchase of the home.

Since the program does not allow borrowers to apply for the grants directly, Herget Bank will apply for the grants on their behalf. Borrowers must then receive home ownership education to help ensure that they understand the home buying process as well as the financial responsibilities of home ownership.

Grebner added that the program will help many Illinois families overcome one of the major obstacles to realizing the dream of home ownership – the inability to afford the down payment and closing costs. “We are delighted to be able to participate in this program and look forward to expanding the home ownership opportunities of low-income home buyers in our area,” she said.

Home buyers can contact (309) 272-2381 to see if they qualify for the program.

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