Program could offer local homebuyers assistance with down payments |

Program could offer local homebuyers assistance with down payments

A program looking to expand into Granby — and maybe all of Grand County — could help potential homebuyers with down payments.

The MetroDPA program is run by the City and County of Denver, but operates in over 40 communities across the Front Range. On Tuesday, representatives of the organizations and a local mortgage broker spoke to Granby’s board of trustees about possibly expanding into town.

“This program offers the opportunity to someone who qualifies — and normally for any FHA, VA or conventional style loan — and the only thing they’re missing is the amount of money they need for the down payment on that first loan,” said Andrew Johnston, representative of the Department of Housing Stability in Denver.

Without using federal, state or local money, MetroDPA offers down payment assistance to qualified buyers though forgivable three-year second mortgage with a 0% interest rate. Borrowers can get up to 6% of their mortgage to be used for the down payment and closing costs by paying a slightly higher interest rate on their first mortgage, which MetroDPA earns a premium on to be self sufficient.

“It sounds a little bit too good to be true, but what I am asking for is the opportunity for the City and County of Denver to offer this program in your jurisdiction,” Johnston said to trustees.

For down payment assistance of 3% the total mortgage, Johnston said that the current rate would be 3.125% as compared to the 2.375% rate for 0% assistance.

Qualified buyers are considered those with a credit score above 640 and an income below $150,000. The program cannot be used for second homes or investment properties and has to be done in an approved area.

That’s where Granby’s town board comes in. Though the program requires no staff time or town money to operate, an intergovernmental agreement is required to allow MetroDPA to operate in Granby.

Johnston said he also has been speaking with the Grand County Housing Authority to see if the county would also be interested in pursuing the opportunity.

“(The county’s housing authority) doesn’t seem like they have anything quite like this,” he said.

Once allowed, any interested lenders can begin offering this program. Seeing no downside, Granby trustees directed staff to bring an IGA forward.

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