Seize the Lighthouse Advantage: Guide Your Clients to Success with Down Payment Assistance Programs

Illustration of a lighthouse in Downtown Tucson, symbolizing guidance in homebuying.
Guiding Light in Tucson Real Estate: Downtown Lighthouse Illustration.

Transcript (Unedited)

You know, sometimes the math doesn’t add up until you look a little bit more closely at the underlying numbers. My name is Tom Heath. I’m Vice President, Senior Loan Officer, and I lead the Mortgage Guidance Group here at Nova Home Loans. I want to shed some light on a conversation I had earlier in the week with a real estate agent regarding the Lighthouse Down Payment Assistance funds.

Many of you are aware of this program. It’s a very popular down payment assistance program offering up to four percent (4%) of the purchase price towards assistance and it has really good interest rates which differentiates itself from other down payment assistance programs out there.

Overall, by far the best combination of assistance, interest rates, terms, etc. So it’s very popular. Well three days into it on Wednesday they put a Facebook post out that said oh my gosh we’ve given out two -thirds of our money, you know 16 million dollars the 25 million dollars have been allocated, and this is three days into it.

A real estate agent reached out to me and said, I don’t understand the math, $14,000 is the average amount of assistance. How do we go through $16 million that fast? That’s like over a thousand transactions that need to have occurred because you have to be under contract before you can reserve your funds.

Well, the Lighthouse program, the total allocation is based upon the transaction size. So if $14,000 is the average down payment assistance, and it’s 4%, then the transaction is around $350,000. That’s the number they’re using. So $25 million divided by $350,000 means there’s about 70 or 80 transactions that are going to qualify with the Lighthouse program. So two-thirds of the way through, about 50 homes had been reserved. So that’s where that math comes from. It can be a little confusing.

There are other down payment assistance programs and Lighthouse is due to come back multiple times this year. It’s been very successful and we expect to see it occur again multiple times throughout the year. So even though the funds go quickly, it’s important that the clients are pre-qualified, in a position to act because when the announcement is made that it’s open for reserving funds, you want to be able to move forward.

If you have questions on this, if you want to talk about this program or any down payment assistance program, just click the link over my shoulder, schedule some time and we’ll be glad to walk you through the various options that are available. And welcome to March. So if you’re out this weekend working, don’t hesitate to reach out to Trevor or myself. If you have questions on a pre-qualification or loan programs, he and I will both be working and look forward to chatting with you. Have a great, great weekend.