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New Program Aims to Help Potential Buyers in Phoenix Put Down $15,000

PHOENIX – Housing help is on the way for hundreds of valley residents. A new neighborhood program gives those who qualify cash for a down payment on a new home.

The city of Phoenix is teaming up with non-profit groups and Wells Fargo bank.

Under the program ‘Neighborhood Lift,’ residents can get $15,000 for the purchase of a new home.

This $15,000 is essentially free money for a down payment or a renovation. As long as you don’t make too much money, the program is open to anyone and the city is encouraging people to give it a try.

Fifteen grand is good down payment, and this program is designed to get people who may not have that kind of cash into the housing market.

“We need to build a stronger marketplace for housing in this city if we are going to make a full recovery,” says Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton.

The program was praised by the mayor and other city leaders at unveiling in downtown Phoenix.

A potential buyer has to be approved for financing and meet some restrictions — for example, a family four cannot bring in more than $78,600.

The home also has to be in Phoenix.

“With this program, we expect to help nearly 400 potential homebuyers in Phoenix,” says Patricia Garcia Duarte of Neighborhood Housing Services.

According to Wells Fargo, the $15,000 would be a zero interest loan payable over 5 years.

But each year you’re in that home, 20 percent of that loan will be forgiven. After 5 years, you’d owe nothing.

“It is a great starting point. There are a lot of people who don’t have enough money for a down payment or closing costs and this certainly will help them,” says realtor Doug Oien.

But Oien says, in the lower price ranges, the market is very competitive.

“Some people have put in 10 or 12 offers and gotten shut out,” he says. “I would say to find a home as quickly as possible and to make an offer as quick as you can and hope that there aren’t multiple offers.”

There is a two day event planned at the Phoenix Convention Center on March 23 and 24.

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