UNAFFORDABLE UTAH

45 Utahns buy homes in initial week of $20k assistance program

Aug 3, 2023, 5:14 PM

SALT LAKE — More than $3 million has already been spoken for during the first week of Utah’s new, $20,000 first-time homebuyer assistance program.

Utah lawmakers allocated $50 million for the program.

Utah Housing Corporation started funding the assistance loans on July 25, since then 45 Utahns have already completed a purchase of a newly built home, townhome, or condo totaling $900,000 in assistance loans.

“We’re really excited about that,” said Jonathan Hanks, the corporation’s chief operating officer. “There’s a lot of enthusiasm towards it and there’s a lot of people who are sending in their reservation requests.”

On top of the closed loans, Utah Housing reports that they have received 113 reservations that are either approved or pending, which total $2,260,000. There are 2,142 reservations remaining.

In order to make a reservation, potential buyers don’t need to already have a new home, townhome or condo selected or under contract. They just need to be pre-approved by a participating lender.

So far, the average home purchase price has been $376,722 and the average assistance loan amount has been $19,770.

The program is only available for new construction and will provide a loan for up to $20,000 that can be used for any combination of down payment, closing costs or to permanently buy down the mortgage interest rate.

Hanks explained that a two-point rate buydown in current conditions can amount to significant savings for buyers.

“You’re going to be saving anywhere from $450 to $550 a month, which not only reduces your monthly payment but also creates an availability to maybe purchase more of a home than you thought you could otherwise,” Hanks said.

To qualify for the program, the newly built residential unit must be priced at or below $450,000 and recipients must be a resident of Utah for at least one year when they close on the loan.

“There is a lot of building going on and this has really encouraged a lot of homebuilders to really focus product in this $450,000 or below range,” Hanks said.

So far, 66% of the identified properties for the program are in Utah County. 27% of the properties are in Salt Lake County and 10% in Washington County.

“Eligible property types include detached single-family homes, condominiums, townhomes, or similar residential dwellings, including manufactured or modular homes attached to a permanent foundation,” according to the housing corporation.

The loans will have a zero percent interest rate and will not have monthly payments. Recipients will have to pay back the loan—or a portion of it—only when they sell the home or refinance the mortgage.

The repayment amount will be either the amount of the assistance loan or 50% of the home’s equity at the time of sale or refinancing, whichever is less.

KSL 5 TV Live

Unaffordable Utah

The cost of homeowner's insurance in Utah has risen by double digits since 2022, impacting both cur...

Daniel Woodruff

Cost of homeowner’s insurance in Utah up by double digits each year since 2022

Homeowner's insurance costs have risen by double-digit percentages for the last three years. The Utah insurance commissioner has concerns, and advice.

3 days ago

A Redfin sign listing a Utah home for sale....

Daniel Woodruff

Utah’s median home price rises to $500k despite high mortgage rates

Even with high mortgage rates, Utah's home prices are still going up, as the median price for a home in the state is $500,000.

8 days ago

A group of graduates at their ceremony....

Karah Brackin

AI and budgeting are the biggest challenges for newer graduates, experts say

With graduation season in full swing, the “real world” challenges graduates face may look a little different this year.

25 days ago

(FILE) Two signs advertising bedrooms for rent....

Daniel Woodruff

Rent costs are up nationally, but what about Utah?

While some aspects of inflation are cooling down, the cost of renting has continued rising.

1 month ago

KSL’s Matt Gephardt price shopped several items at traditional grocery stores and specialty food ...

Matt Gephardt

Gephardt Busts Inflation: Will shopping specialty food markets save you money?

To save money on your groceries, a specialty food market might not come to mind. But KSL Consumer Investigator Matt Gephardt found branching out to specialty food markets might help you bust some grocery inflation.

1 month ago

High food prices are squeezing Utah families, and going to the grocery store can be a frustrating e...

Daniel Woodruff

Is grocery shopping ‘frustrating and stressful’? Here are ways to stretch your dollars

High food prices are squeezing Utah families, and going to the grocery store can be a frustrating experience.

1 month ago

Sponsored Articles

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light up your home with these top lighting trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for hassle-free computer repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

45 Utahns buy homes in initial week of $20k assistance program