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Equity Builder – Member Eligibility

The Equity Builder Program (EBP) provides members with grants to assist home buyers earning no more than 80 percent of the area median income.

Eligible EBP Uses of EBP Grants
Members can use EBP grants to:

  • Provide down-payment and closing-cost assistance.

  • Pay rehabilitation costs associated with acquisition.

  • Pay the approved home-buyer-counseling organization for the cost of home-buyer counseling, up to a maximum of $500 per household.

In addition, any of the above can be used in conjunction with home buyer's savings through an Individual Development Account (IDA) or matched-savings program.

EBP grants may not be used to create a principal, interest, taxes, and insurance (PITI) reserve; to pay the costs of prepaid life insurance premiums; to reimburse home buyers for earnest deposits; to return cash back to a buyer at the closing in excess of $250; or in conjunction with an Affordable Housing Program subsidy awarded to the same borrower for the same transaction.

To receive EBP funding, members must agree to:

  • Work with an experienced home-buyer counseling agency to offer buyers homeownership education/counseling.

  • Originate the buyers' first mortgages using conventional fixed-rate or adjustable-rate mortgages. EBP-eligible adjustable-rate mortgages must have an initial interest-rate period of five years or greater. Maximum interest rate caps are 2 percent annually and 6 percent lifetime.

  • Provide buyers with concessions or other special incentives in connection with the mortgage financing, including waived or reduced fees, a reduced interest rate (a rate below that for a standard, conventional market-rate mortgage), relaxed underwriting standards or downpayment assistance, or other cash contributions made by the member at closing.

  • Certify, prior to disbursement, to a household's eligibility for the program and that the funds will be used for eligible purposes.


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