Email signup

Neighborhood Expert: Down payment assistance programs in Virginia

Laura Schwartz is a licensed Realtor in VA, D.C. and MD with McEnearney Associates in Vienna. You can follow Laura on Instagram at @LauraSchwartzRealtor or her Facebook page. Laura can be reached at 703-283-6120 or

My post last week was about predictions for the real estate market this year.

I mentioned at the end that there are multiple down payment assistance programs available in Virginia. I want to highlight some of them here. With the new calendar year, new funds are available for these programs and first-time buyers should be aware these are available.

However, before I get to those programs I want to highlight two programs that are readily available at all times:

FHA Loan, which is available to potential buyers who don’t currently own a home with only a 3.5% down payment with a minimum credit score of 580 (if the score is 500-579 they require 10% down). This is only available on your primary residence, not a rental.

Conventional loan with 3% down. A common mis-conception is that you need 20% down to buy a home. But you can put down anything from 3% and over on a conventional loan. The big deal with the 20% down is that anything less requires mortgage insurance, which is an additional payment each month on your mortgage until you get to that magical 80% loan to value number (which can come through payments or appreciation).

Again, each loan program has nuances and requirements, so you’ll want to speak to an experienced loan officer to determine which one is best for you.

Now, down to payment assistance programs. Let’s talk basic requirements:

  • First time buyer
  • Buying your primary home
  • Meet eligibility requirements (income limits and credit verification)
  • Only specific loan officers can do many of these loans as they must be approved

Virginia DHCD: Down Payment Assistance Program DPA

  • Offers gap financing in the form of a grant/forgivable loan for first-time buyers at or below 80% of the area median income
  • Can receive up to 10% or 15% of the sales price plus up to $2,500 towards closing costs
  • 2022 Adjust Home Income Limits for DC Metro: $63,000 for 1 person, $72,000 for 2 people

Closing Cost Assistance Grant

  • Helps to eliminate funds needed for closing

Mortgage Credit Certificate

  • Could lower federal income taxes owed, tax credit can be taken for the life of loan

USDA (Rural Housing)

  • 100% Financing option
  • Low mortgage insurance

Virginia Housing Plus Second Mortgage

  • Combines 2 mortgage together to cover the cost of your down payment

Many of these programs can be combined to maximize your benefits.

To read more about these programs, Virginia Housing has a great website with information. If you want to talk about how we can work together to make your dream of home ownership a reality, please reach out.

Photo via Tierra Mallorca/Unsplash

Recent Stories

Good Friday evening! Today we published 6 articles that were read a total of 6621 times on FFXnow alone, so far. 📈 Top stories The following are the most-read articles…

Lake Anne’s plaza will once again spring to life this summer with concerts. Lake Anne Live! — an event series that kicked off last year — brings Thursday evening concerts…

The proposed repurposing of Inova Health System’s former corporate headquarters in Merrifield as live/work and workforce housing units got a hearty recommendation from the Fairfax County Planning Commission earlier this…

Are you ready for summer? Live Fairfax has a bucket list of indoor activities, outdoor escapades and trips to explore this summer.

Camps are just the beginning of what’s in store at Art House 7 this summer. We’re thrilled to offer an array of exciting classes for both kids and adults!Rediscover your creativity with some of our AH7 favorites, such as drawing, hand-sewing, modern embroidery, and our popular 3-week Jump into Crochet classes. But that’s not all! We’ve added some fresh and exciting options to our summer class selection, guaranteed to spark your imagination.

To enhance your artistic journey, we have intensified some of our Ceramics: The Wheel classes to a full 3-hour duration. This extended time allows for more creativity and skill development in each class session. If you’re eager for a captivating twist, give Contemporary Still-Life Drawing & Painting a go. Or why not try an immersive outdoor painting adventure? We have a unique opportunity for you to bring your painting skills to life while learning and creating in the great outdoors with our Landscape Painting: Studio and Plein Air class!

We invite you to visit our website and explore our full Summer Session schedule, brimming with a diverse range of classes and camps. Classes and camps begin June 20th. Unleash your inner artist, broaden your horizons, and embark on a summer adventure like no other. Let’s make this a summer to remember at Art House 7!

Submit your own Community Post here.

Potomac Harmony Chorus has a new director! We’re ready
to kick off the season with new music, a new approach, and YOU!

Potomac Harmony is one of 500 choruses in Sweet
Adelines International. We’re a vibrant,
contemporary, inclusive, welcoming, and open community of women singers who
perform four-part harmony, barbershop style, committed to a high level of
achievement through teaching, mentoring, personal growth, and performance. Our vision is to entertain, educate, and
enrich lives through musical expression while promoting the barbershop art

Potomac Harmony recently had our first performance
with our new director, receiving rave reviews! We invite you to stop by any Wednesday
evening and be part of the fun and harmony!

Read More

Submit your own Community Post here.

Army Birthday Festival – Free and Fun

Make Saturday, June 10, 2023 a great day!

Come celebrate the Army Birthday Festival at the National Museum of the U.S. Army from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Rain or Shine!

• Experience outdoor and indoor fun activities, for all

Unveiling of West Ford historical highway marker

Gum Springs will be celebrating 190 years of its founding by freedman West Ford on Saturday, June 17, 2023. To kick-off the celebration, there will be an unveiling of a Virginia historical highway marker for West Ford on Fordson Road


Subscribe to our mailing list