Personal Finance

Maine First-Time Home Buyer Programs of 2019

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Buying a first home is a steep challenge, but a variety of home loan programs can give you a leg up. The Maine State Housing Authority, or MaineHousing, offers programs to help qualified first-time home buyers, mobile home owners and veterans get a mortgage.

National home loan programs also help make homeownership more accessible by featuring low-down-payment or low-credit-score requirements.

Investigate these mortgage options to get started on buying a first home in Maine.

National first-time home buyer programs

With their no- or low-down-payment requirements, these nationally available mortgages meet the needs of many first-time home buyers.

MaineHousing highlights and eligibility requirements

You’re considered a first-time home buyer in Maine and may be eligible for a MaineHousing program if you haven’t owned a home in the last three years. Veterans and retired or active-duty military members are also eligible, as long as any home they currently own is sold by closing. Current or former owners of unattached mobile homes on leased land can also apply.

» MORE: Tips for first-time home buyers

Highlights

  • Offers mortgages with below-market, fixed interest rates and no- or low-down-payment options.
  • Down payment and closing cost assistance available.
  • Condos, and some permanently attached mobile homes, are eligible.
  • Provides mortgage payment protection in case of unemployment.
  • Offers a free interest rate lock of 90 days for existing properties and 210 days for new homes, including modular and mobile homes.
  • Qualified veterans, active-duty and retired military can qualify for an interest rate discount.
  • Mortgage and grant program available to replace old mobile homes with new, energy-efficient manufactured homes.

Eligibility

  • Meet income and purchase price limits; most Maine households and Maine properties are eligible.
  • Complete home buyer education class to receive down payment or closing cost assistance.
  • Have a minimum credit score of 640.
  • Property must be three acres or less for existing homes and one acre or less for new homes, if the land value exceeds 30% of the overall appraised value.
  • New and existing single-family homes, owner-occupied two- to four-unit apartment buildings, condominiums and permanently attached mobile homes are eligible.
  • Mobile homes must be 20 years old or less and may be on owned or leased land for the First Home Loan program.

» MORE: Compare the best mortgage lenders for first-time home buyers

MaineHousing first-time home buyer programs

Summary: 2019 Maine first-time home buyer programs

  • First Home Loan with below-market interest rates and low-down-payment options.
  • Salute ME program with interest rate discount on First Home Loans for veterans.
  • Salute Home Again with interest rate discount on First Home Loans for veterans who are not first-time buyers.
  • Advantage program for assistance with down payment and closing costs on First Home Loans.
  • Mobile Home Self-Insured Option, a replacement for mortgage insurance for  mobile home buyers.
  • Pre-1976 Mobile Home Replacement Initiative, a mortgage and grant program for owners of older mobile homes.

MaineHousing offers its home buyer programs through a network of approved lenders. Before you start shopping for a home, contact an approved lender to apply. The lender will explain the eligibility requirements and help you choose the right home loan and assistance program.

You can learn more about the programs and the homebuying process at MaineHousing.

» MORE: See the best mortgage lenders for first-time home buyers

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