First-time homebuyers: ECDI can help!

July 12, 2010 § Leave a comment

So what is an IDA?

Well, the Corporation for Enterprise Development defines it this way:

  “Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) are matched savings accounts that enable low-income American families to save, build assets, and enter the financial mainstream. IDAs reward the monthly savings of working-poor families who are building towards purchasing an asset – most commonly buying their first home, paying for post-secondary education, or starting a small business.” (www.cfed.org)   

 In plainer terms, opening an individual development account means that you save, save, save any way that you can, and your hard work will be rewarded with matched funds to speed you along the path to realizing your dreams. Maybe your goal is to be an equity-building, hearth-and-home-loyal, swelling-with-pride homeowner, but coming up with a down payment seems like an impossibility.

Fortunately, ECDI has a down payment assistance IDA program specifically designed for those wanting to purchase a home.

How do I know if I’m eligible?

In order to be eligible for this program your household earned income must be at or below 200% of the poverty level with a dependent in the house OR  household income at or below 200% of the poverty level and assets do not exceed $10,000 (excluding house and car).  Not sure where you fall? This table should spell things out for you.              

Household size 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Monthly/ Yearly Income $1,805/ $21,660 $2,428/ $29,140 $2,052/ $36,620 $3,675/ $44,100 $4,298/ $51,580 $4,922/ $59,060 $5,545/ $66,540 $6,168/ $74,020

 Still not sure if you are eligible? Contact ECDI by calling (614) 559-0115 or e-mail us. We’re a friendly bunch and can answer any questions you might have.

Hooray, I’m eligible! What now?
After meeting with a member of our lovely staff, you’ll begin the savings and education process. You’ll have to take a Financial Literacy course at ECDI, where you’ll learn the basics of money management and personal finance. (Learn more about ECDI’s courses, by clicking here.)   Additionally, you will need to complete a first-time homebuyer’s education training at a recommended city agency – the good people at MORPC, (Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission), HOTH (Homes of the Hill), CUL (Columbus Urban League) and CHP (Columbus Housing Partnership) all have monthly training sessions that meet the requirement.

Here comes the hard part – saving.  Do you have refugee status? Your saved $2,000 will be matched with $2,000 for a total of $4,000 for your down payment. Not a refugee? Your saved $1,000 will be matched with $3,000 for a total of $4,000 for your down payment.

Does this seem tricky? ECDI will be there to point you in the right directions and guide you in wrangling all the necessary paperwork  so you can eventually get those keys in your hand.    

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