FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
I finished the Home Buying Class, what do I do next?
If you are ready to purchase, here are some next steps:
- Attend a Meet the Lenders - obtain a preapproval letter from one of our participating lenders, speak with realtors, and staff from the BHC homebuying team.
- Call the Boston Home Center for your free one on one counseling session available to all graduates of the Boston Home Center Homebuying 101 classes
- Apply for our Financial Assistance Program
- Join our Homebuying Club
I don’t live in Boston; can I still take your classes?
- Yes, our classes are open to everyone, but preferences may be given to current Boston residents.
Can I use the City of Boston’s home buying certificate and receive financial assistance to purchase a home outside of Boston?
- No. The City of Boston’s Financial Assistance program is for eligible homebuyers purchasing in Boston only.
- The Boston Home Center Homebuying 101 Certificate is a CHAPA approved home buying class. If you are purchasing outside of Boston, you should contact your bank and/or home buying program in the town where you are purchasing to verify that they accept our certificate.
I took the Class with another agency; will you accept their certificate as proof that I completed a Home Buying Class?
- We accept valid certificates from all CHAPA approved home buying counseling agencies.
How often do you have classes?
We offer homebuying classes, seminars and workshops throughout the year and throughout the neighborhoods of Boston.
My husband and I are buying a house, do we both need to take the class?
Yes, if both your names will be on the mortgage you will both need to complete a hombuying class.
I own a house in another state; can I be a first time buyer in Boston?
No. If you own property in another state you are not considered a first time buyer in Boston. A first-time buyer is someone who has not had interest in any property for at least three years.
I owned a house and sold it, can I become a first time buyer again?
To participate in our program financial assistance program; you are considered a first time buyer if you have not owned any real estate property in the previous three (3) years. To purchase an affordable unit you cannot have had any interest in any real estate property.
How much money can I get from your program to buy a house?
Our financial assistance programs offer up to 3% of the purchase price towards your down payment and closing cost. Please visit our web page at http://www.cityofboston.gov/dnd/bhc/Financial_Assistance_Program.asp for complete guidelines.
How much money do I need to buy a house?
The amount of money you will need to purchase a home will depend greatly on the purchase price of the property and the mortgage product. Typically, first time home buyer mortgage products require 3% or 5% down payment.
Do I have to pay the City back if I get down payment assistance to buy my house?
You will not have to pay the City back any monies received from the financial assistance program if you meet all of the terms of the program. Currently, you will have to reside in the property for ten (10) years before the loan is forgiven.
How long is the home buying certificate valid for?
The Boston Home Center’s home buying class certificate is valid for three (3) years from the date of graduation. Once expired, the certificate cannot be reissued or extended. A new class will have to be completed before a new certificated can be issue.
Do I have to have a good credit score to get down payment assistance from the city?
We currently require a minimum credit score of at least 660 to quality for the Financial Assistance Program
Have more questions?
If you have a question that is not on our list, please Ask Here.
BHC staff will respond to your question, and both question and answer will appear in our upcoming Ask A Question column.