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First-Time Home Buyers

**** IMPORTANT NOTICE – PLEASE READ ****

At this time Affordable Housing Services will no longer be accepting first time home buyer applications. We apologize for any disruption this may cause. This is effective as of April 9, 2014. Any application received, and date stamped in our office on or before April 9, 2014, will be processed based on funding availability. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact the Affordable Housing Services Department. We do expect to start processing applications again sometime during July 2014 when our new funding allocations come in.

Affordable Housing Services (AHS) has reprogrammed funds in the HOME Program that will be used as Down Payment Assistance (DPA) and/or closing costs for eligible first time home buyers needing this assistance to purchase a home in the unincorporated areas of Hillsborough County including the City of Temple Terrace and the City of Plant City.  Furthermore, AHS anticipates the receipt of additional DPA and/or closing cost grant funding from the State of Florida in the upcoming months.  In order to be eligible for any of this assistance, a prospective first-time home buyer must be income eligible, complete a minimum eight (8) hour homebuyer education program and receive a "Completion Certificate" as outlined in the Affordable Housing Service FTHB - Homebuyer Education Policy as amended.  Additionally, a prospective first-time home buyer must obtain a first mortgage from a lender who is included on our list of FTHB Program Certified Lender Partners

Alternatively, if a prospective first-time home buyer obtains their first mortgage through the Housing Finance Authority of Hillsborough County "Home Sweet Home Hillsborough" Program, DPA and closing costs assistance is still available.  AHS has earmarked HOME funds for down payment assistance (DPA) and/or closing costs to be used in conjunction with these first mortgages when provided to an eligible first time home buyer.

Please note, a prospective home buyer does not have to be a first-time home buyer in order to purchase one of our Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) homes.  A first-time homebuyer is defined as a prospective homebuyer who has not owned a home in the past three (3) years.  If a prospective home buyer is receiving NSP funds for DPA and/or closing costs to purchase a home, they cannot own any real estate property at the time of application.  NSP homes are located in targeted neighborhoods.

Please note that an additional $5,000 in DPA funds may be awarded to a state certified teacher, state certified nurse, state certified firefighter, or a state certified law enforcement officer, if that homebuyer household needs it.   

See the following links for additional assistance programs available to you:

Florida Housing Finance Corporation (First Time Home Buyer Wizard)

Select Hillsborough County and enter the number of people in your household in the drop-down boxes and click go. 

Procedure To Apply
  • Homebuyers must complete an 8-hour homebuyer education class and obtain a certificate of course completion.
  • Interested homebuyers will need to contact a certified lender partner to pre-qualify for a fixed rate first-mortgage loan and submit a request for down payment assistance.


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