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Buying your first home is tough – really tough. And buying in California only makes your challenge even more difficult because even entry-level homes tend to be higher than the national median price point. However, we love it here and know that the price is worth the sunshine and lifestyle.

The hurdles you need to jump through to purchase your first property include not only rising to the challenge of saving your initial deposit but then also qualifying for a loan that enables you to buy (and all the paperwork that comes along with a mortgage application). Then, with a deposit and pre-approval letter, you next need to find a property and have your offer accepted. None of these are small feats, which is why it’s essential to have a qualified real estate team in your corner.

But did you know that there are first-time homebuyer programs in California that can make buying a home just a little easier?


The California Housing Finance Agency (CalFHA) educates buyers and helps them access several loan programs, including CalPlus conventional loans, CalHFA FHA, CalHFAVa, CalHFA USDA, and the CalPLUS FHA loan programs.

To access these programs, you must first participate in a $99 eight-hour educational course. While this may seem costly, getting this information and access to one-on-one counseling will help you better understand the mortgage industry and your future as a homeowner.


The CalVet program is specific for active service members and veterans. Firstly, it’s an educational program that helps you understand the benefits and reality of home ownership, but it also gives you access to special VA loan options.

California first-time home buyers grants

Wait – you can get help obtaining a deposit for your first home? YES.

The CalHFA MyHome Assistance program allows qualifying buyers to borrow up to $11,000 towards their down payment and closing costs. To qualify, you must:

  • Be a first-time home buyer purchasing a single-family home as a primary residence.
  • Complete the education counseling.
  • Meet income limits

If you’re a school employee, fire department employee, or pursuing the purchase of a newly constructed home, you might have different limits. Get in touch with The Simpson Team so we can discuss how much assistance you are eligible for.

Forgivable Equity Builder Loan

This is a newer program that helps improve affordability for first-time homebuyers. Under this program, you can get a loan for as much as 10% of a property’s purchase price. After five years, the loan may be forgiven provided that the homeowner remained in residence for the entire five-year period.

To qualify, you must:

  • Be a first-time homebuyer purchasing a single-family home as your primary residence.
  • Complete the educational course if you’re purchasing through CalFHA
  • Meet income limits.

While purchasing a home in the Golden State is difficult, there are systems in place to help ease the burden. If you’re a first-time homebuyer, we’d love to be the team that guides you through the loan process and helps you fulfill your homeownership dreams. Apply Now to get started today.

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