First-time homebuyers in the infamously tough California housing market are in luck thanks to a new closing cost grant from local Realtors.

The Santa Clara County Association of Realtors and the Silicon Valley Association of Realtors secured a $100,000 grant from the California Association of Realtors Housing Affordability Fund to financially aid first-time homebuyers in the area. 

Through the grant, first-time homebuyers will be eligible for awards of up to $5,000 per grantee for customary non-recurring closing costs paid by the buyer.

Plus, the Santa Clara County Realtor Foundation and the Silicon Valley Realtor Charitable Foundation are contributing the necessary operational funds to implement the grant. The Housing Trust Silicon Valley is the administrator for this program.

This is welcomed news for a housing market that is consistently one of the most unaffordable in the country.

In Silicon Valley, especially, HousingWire previously covered a story about how even a housing official in Silicon Valley couldn’t afford to live there. Needless to say, the market is tough.

"I've seen many young families say they just can't make it work here and we end up losing folks to areas where they can purchase that starter home," said Rick Smith, president of SCCAOR. "This closing cost grant can make the difference for buyers just on the edge of affordability."

While there are three requirements to get approved for the grant, two of the requirements shouldn’t be too difficult to adhere to.

Buyers looking to qualify need to meet these three standards before applying:

  • They must use a Realtor in the transaction
  • They must be considered a first-time homebuyer under federal tax rules
  • They must meet the income requirement of earning up to 120% of area median income.

"We must address the housing needs of hardworking families who live in our communities," said Denise Welsh, president of SILVAR. "This program will aid first-time homebuyers in their efforts to attain homeownership."

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