March 18, 2014
The SFGate recently posted an article regarding the city’s efforts to increase their down payment assistance from $100,000 to $200,000 per household. According to the Mayor, Ed Lee,
“Our city’s middle class is deeply affected by the housing crunch
– they make too much to qualify
for our traditional affordable housing,
but not enough to afford
much of the new market-rate construction.”
Many first-time homebuyers face the same obstacle in Mammoth Lakes. With the average single family home priced at $575,000 in 2013 and the average condo priced at $260,500, many middle-management households cannot afford to buy locally. This paradigm creates long commutes, contributing to environmental degradation, less time recharging with family, and health issues.
The new down payment program in San Francisco will lend secondary, silent loans with local funding to homebuyers earning up to 120% of the Area Median Income (AMI). This covers an essential gap in other sources which often only lend to homebuyers earning up to 80% AMI. The loans are repaid when the homeowner sells or refinances the home and then re-used to help another household achieve their goal of homeownership.