Here’s how North Texans looking for affordable homes can find help

Here’s how North Texans looking for affordable homes can find help
Here’s how North Texans looking for affordable homes can find help

North Texans priced out of rising housing prices are turning to agencies and organizations to find affordable housing. By 2021, more than half of households in the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area were priced out of homeownership, according to a Dallas Morning News analysis.

Some local programs try to help families pay home purchase costs and provide resources for cost-burdened renters. Here is a list of several programs that allow North Texans to find a way.

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Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity

Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity provides homeownership counseling, education and down payment assistance for low to moderate income families and individuals. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Certified Homeownership Counseling Program—which helps people become mortgage-ready in a year or less—requires participants to work toward a credit score of 600 or higher, demonstrate sufficient and stable income to purchase a home, and have sufficient savings to cover expenses related to the purchase of a home. The program costs $125 for a single applicant and $200 for dual applicants.

Texas Homebuyer Assistance Program

Texas residents with a minimum FICO credit score of at least 620, along with meeting debt-to-income ratio requirements, can qualify for home loans through the Texas Homebuyer Program with the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs. Several homebuyer programs provide additional funds for down payment assistance of up to 5%. Fees include a $275 compliance review, a $150 loan review, an $85 tax service and other fees.

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City of Dallas Home Buyer Assistance Program

The Dallas Homebuyer Assistance Program (DHAP) helps homebuyers with specific income requirements purchase a home within the Dallas city limits. The program provides homebuyers with a forgivable deferred loan of up to $60,000 in high opportunity areas and $50,000 in all other areas. A high opportunity area in Dallas is determined by the levels of poverty. Applicants must have a household income of less than 80% of the median family income in the Dallas area, which is $57,000 for a household of two or $71,200 for a household of four. Homebuyers must also put down at least $1,000 toward the purchase and have at least 2 months of monthly mortgage payments in savings after closing.

Dallas County Mortgage Counseling Center

Dallas County residents who are first-time homebuyers, meet income and property requirements and prequalify for a mortgage can receive up to $7,500 for down payment and closing costs. Homes purchased must be in participating cities or in an unincorporated part of Dallas County. Participants’ income cannot exceed $62,350 for two-person households or $77,900 for a four-person household. Learn more about Dallas County’s homebuyer programs.

DHA Housing Solutions for North Texas

One of Dallas’ housing agencies offers both rental assistance and home purchase programs for participants who meet specific income and employment requirements. DHA owns and manages residential properties throughout Dallas and also provides Housing Choice Vouchers to eligible households. Two-person households can earn up to $62,350 and four-person households can earn up to $77,900 to qualify for DHA programs.

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Texas Tenants Union

The Texas Tenants Union is a state resource for tenants, offering education, workshops, organizing assistance, counseling, training and referrals to legal aid and social services. Tenants who want to learn more about their rights under state law can call 214-823-2733.

Legal Aid of Northwest Texas

Residents of 114 Texas counties can contact the nonprofit Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas for free civil legal assistance with a variety of issues, including foreclosure, eviction, repairs, criminal record removal, taxes and Debt Collection. Tenants who have problems with landlords can call 855-548-8457.

Dallas Eviction Advocacy Center

The Dallas-based nonprofit provides pro bono legal assistance, housing assistance, rent relief and eviction education to all Dallas County residents regardless of income, race, immigration status or language preference. DEAC provides assistance to tenants facing eviction and can represent them at court hearings.

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