- First-Time Homebuyer
Low-income households may qualify for assistance with down payments and closing costs.
In order to expand homeownership opportunities for low-income households, the Housing & Community Development Office offers a First-Time Homebuyer Program that provides financial and technical assistance to allow qualified first-time homebuyers to purchase a home. Financial assistance is provided based on need but is limited to $14,999.99 per household, as long as there is funding available. For any financial assistance provided, 50% is in the form of a repayable loan and 50% is in the form of a forgivable loan provided that the homebuyer owns and occupies the home as their primary residence. The repayable portion is usually repayable is small monthly payments. This program is first-come, first-serve.
Applicant must meet one of the following definitions of a first-time homebuyer:
- An individual who has had no ownership in a principal residence during the last three (3) years
- A single parent that has only owned a property with a former spouse while married
- An individual who is a displaced homemaker and has only owned a property with a spouse
- An individual who had only owned a principal residence not permanently affixed to a permanent foundation
- An individual who has only owned a property that was not in compliance with State, local or model building codes and which cannot be brought into compliance for less that the cost of constructing a permanent structure
Applicant's total household gross income shall not exceed eighty (80) percent of the City's median area income adjusted for household size (See the Downloads Section below)
Applicant must exhibit the ability and willingness to pay creditors. All obligations to the City must be current. Any previous foreclosure, bankruptcy, tax lien, judgment or default that appears on the applicant's credit report may be considered a disqualification.
Applicant must attend a Homeowner Education Class and provide the Housing & Community Development office with a copy prior to any assistance being provided
Applicant must be able to secure financing for the purchase of the home from a private lending institution. The City of Lawton will not provide primary financing for the purchase of the home.
Applicant shall understand that the home they purchase must be the principal dwelling place of the household until all obligations with the City have been met
Home shall be a single-family residence, patio home, condominium, or a townhouse
Applicant may purchase the home they are currently renting provided the home is for sale
Home must be located within the city limits of Lawton
Home may not be located within a floodplain, airport clear zone, or any other environmental hazard area as determined by staff
Home must meet the City of Lawton's property maintenance codes. The Housing & Community Development staff must inspect and approve the home prior to assistance being provided. The First-Time Homebuyer Program does not provide funding to make any required repairs.
Housing costs after purchase, which includes principal, interest, taxes, insurance (PITI or mortgage payment), and estimated utility costs shall not exceed thirty (30) percent of the household's monthly gross income. Example: If the household's gross monthly income (what you make before deductions) is $2,000.00. Thirty percent or $600.00 may be spent on housing. Subtract estimated utility costs of $200.00 and that leaves you with a maximum mortgage payment of $400.00.
- Complete Application (see below for FTHB Application)
- Social Security Cards for all household members and Driver’s Licenses
- Bank Statements for all accounts from the last two months
- Pay Stubs for the last two months
- Public Assistance Benefit Letter
- Social Security Benefit Letter
- VA Benefit Letter
- Retirement Benefit Letter
- Child Support Statement from DHS
- Divorce Decree
- Last Year’s Tax Return
- $25.00 application fee (Money Order or Bank Check only. No cash or personal checks accepted)
The above list of requirements may not apply to all applicants. Some circumstance may require additional information.
Completed applications along with all required documentation will need to be hand delivered to the Housing & Community Development Office. All household members 18 years old or older will have additional paperwork to sign in our office.
Applicant provides the Housing & Community Development office with a complete application and all required documentation
Staff reviews all documentation and verifies information with third parties
**It is highly recommended that the applicant contacts a private financial institution and gets pre-qualified for the purchase of a home during this review time. Please let the financial institution know that you have applied for downpayment and closing cost assistance through this office. After receiving a Notice of Eligibility letter you will only have 45 days to find a qualified home.
Staff determines eligibility and provides the applicant with a Notice of Eligibility letter
Applicant may then look for a home that meets the parameters established in the Notice of Eligibility letter and is in accordance with the program guidelines