Season of Giving


Gary Kelley, Realtor®
Gary Kelley, Realtor –
[email protected]

By Gary Kelley

This article isn’t going to ask for money. Promise.

If you are a first-time buyer or the parent of one, you may be wondering how to get the down payment together for a home.  It’s hard!  I tell people to shake the change out of the couch…. generally met with a nervous smile.  Parents often want to help, and I remind them you can get loans for a house, and there are no retirement loan options (although sometimes you can take a loan on a 401K and pay yourself back.  It’s the paying yourself back part some struggle with).

This is where you need a great real estate agent and an even better loan officer.  The loan officer can help with loan products & requirements (like zip codes) and the realtor can help scout out the products.

For example, there are USDA loans (yep, United States Department of Agriculture). You don’t have to be a farmer to qualify, and they are one of the last zero down mortgages. The catch is they aren’t available everywhere and income limits apply.

VA Loans (Veterans) are another lower cost option. I’ve worked with ex-military where it just makes economic sense to get a VA loan even when qualifying for other loan types!

The mortgage companies themselves often have programs.  For example, Brad Avergon of Fairway Independent Mortgage has a program for “heroes.” Fairway will cut the first years mortgage rate by 1% for active duty military, veterans, first responders (police officers, firefighters, EMTs), medical professionals, and school faculty and staff.

There are many other programs to reduce early loan amounts…. with various companies.

And then there are grant programs.

For example, Worcester has a Community Development Block Grant program. $25,000 per unit for owner-occupied rehab or elder home repair program. This helps an owner with major rehabilitation on properties. It may not directly reduce a mortgage, and certainly increases affordability!  Income eligibility applies. Owner occupancy required for 5 years.

Don’t give up hope.  Double down your energy.

The main thing is this… if you’re looking for a home… it’s my view you need to get connected with a loan officer and realtor. There are local loan officers, and ones working remote. My view is you need to be able to sit with someone and go over your specific situation. Sorry… you need to get out from Google and talk your own case face to face.

In this season of giving, please enjoy your family and holidays whatever you celebrate… Happy Hannukah, Merry Christmas, Happy Festivus, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy Merry.

Need tools for home search:

Gary is heard on WCRN AM 830 and/or seen on WMCT-TV and Westborough Community Television discussing “All Things Real Estate.”

If you need advice on selling your home or buying a new one, give us a call 508-733-6005.



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