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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are helpful answers to homebuyer frequently asked questions.

OHCS helps low and moderate-income families in Oregon buy their first home by providing below-market-rate financing and cash assistance through its Oregon Bond Residential Loan Program. The below-market-rate helps eligible families increase their home purchasing power and lowers their monthly house payments.

The program works with locally approved lenders to ensure all Oregonian homebuyers have access to​ safe and affordable housing. In addition to helping homebuyers and homeowners, we also finance rental housing and work to prevent and end homelessness.​

​Contact an Oregon Bond participating lender​ to discuss your needs, learn more about which program options are right for you, and start the pre-qualifying process.

​Typically it is most helpful to work with a parti​cipating lender​ to get pre-approved for a mortgage loan first, and then work with a real estate agent to help you shop for a home within the home purchase price limit​​.

​No – the Oregon Bond Residential Loan program defines a first-time homebuyer as someone who has not owned and occupied their principal residence for the past three years. Consult with your participating lender​ for more information.​

​No – down ​payment and closing cost loans are only available when you get an Oregon Bond Residential Loan. Additional eligibility requirements may apply, including income limits​​.​

​You can get free, confidential, and non-biased advice from a Housing Counselor​. Additionally, a lender may help you review your credit and determine if there are any quick and effective steps to take to improve your credit.

OHCS does not provide temporary construction loans, but we can provide the permanent financing for a new construction property. Consult with your participating lender​ for more information.
The home you choose must meet the program purchase price limits​​ for the county it resides in​. Your purchase limit will depend on your income and debt. Consult a participati​ng ​lender​ to determine the amount you are approved to borrow.

​Required down payments range from 0-3.5% depending on the underlying loan product (Conventional, FHA, RD, VA). If you qualify for down payment assistance, you typically must contribute at least $1,000 of your own funds toward the transaction.​

​OHCS does not permit co-signers 

​The Oregon Bond Residential Loan program does not finance home repairs.​

​Gross household incom​​​e. 

Consult with a lender to review ​income eligibility guidelines.​​​​

Manufactured and mobile homes are eligible under some mortgage products. Manufactured homes must be permanently attached to a foundation, and taxed as real estate (not personal property). Consult an ​approved lender​ for more information.​

Oregon Residential Loan Program FAQs​

​These are the underlying loan products that you can choose from when you're buying a home. A conventional loan is any type of mortgage that is not secured by a government-sponsored entity such as the FHA, VA or RD. We offer FHA, VA, RD, and Conventional loans, and each has its own requirements. Talk to participating lender​ about which products you qualify for, and the lender​ can explain the advantages and disadvantages of each.​

​Check out the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau​ web page explaining mortgage insurance.​

​A targeted area is an economically distressed area designated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The Oregon Bond Residential​ loan products help restore federally-designated targeted census tracts by making our affordable first-time homebuyer loan products and competitive interest rates available to eligible buyers purchasing a home in these areas.

Please note: OHCS Homeownership Division does not make or arrange loans. It is neither an originator nor creditor and is not affiliated with any Lender. The law requires the Lender to provide the following information to the consumer:

  • Loan fees
  • Annual percentage rate (APR)
  • Repayment conditions
  • Disclosures, and any other legally required information
External Link Disclaimer: This page contains links that will take you outside of the Oregon Housing and Community Services' website. OHCS does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of the linked websites.

Contact us for more information:

Homeownership Residential Loan Specialists