New State Program Helps Home Buyers - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

New State Program Helps Home Buyers

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It's a big push by the state to get people buying homes. Iowa governor Terry Branstad announced today a new program to give buyers a leg up when shopping for a new house.

"All of their closing costs will be covered and the remainder can go toward their down payment which will really assist most buyers," Eric Ryden of Quad Cities Iowa Realty says.

The state is offering up to $3500 to buyers, both new and old, to help them buy a home. First-time buyers and veterans can buy anywhere statewide to qualify for the grant, but repeat buyers must buy in specific areas, including Ames, Des Moines, Dubuque, Iowa City, Fort Dodge, Sioux City, Waterloo, and Davenport.

In Davenport, there are two specific areas repeat buyers can look for a house and qualify for the grant, one in the area between Division Street and 5th Street along the river, the other in West Davenport, outlined by West 12th Street, Division Street, and Warren.

Even with the restrictions, realtors say every little bit helps.

"We can give buyers an additional boost to help them get into a property," Ryden says,"A lot of times repeat buyers are not eligible for these programs, it's going to definitely give everyone some assistance."

But there is a catch-- to qualify, your income has to fall below $90,000 a year, and the house has to cost below $289,000 if you're buying in the specific target areas, or $247,000 if you're buying anywhere else.

Realtors say buyers shouldn't feel restricted by the target areas, but there's a lot of options if they do choose to live there.

"We don't have cookie-cutter neighborhoods," Ryden says, "Our homes are varied."

He says, "These are first time buyer type homes. They are somewhere between that $60,000-$120,000 range and most of them are three bedroom homes."

Realtors, along with the state, hope the program will get buyers out there looking at homes and help boost the housing market.

"I think it's a great program," Ryden says, "We are in a lull in our market right now, and this $3500 can be a great help."

He says, "That's what this program's designed for, to help get buyers spurred and ready to purchase again."

To find out more information on whether or not you qualify and how to apply for the grant, go to the following link: http://www.iowafinanceauthority.gov/forms/buyer.cfm

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