Nonprofit offers down payment help to homebuyers in Bremerton

The city announced a partnership Friday with the nonprofit Community Frameworks to help bridge the gap for qualifying families.

BREMERTON – On Friday, the city announced a partnership with the Washington-based nonprofit Community Frameworks to provide down payment assistance to families looking to purchase a home within Bremerton city limits.

Using funding from the Department of Housing and Urban Development and other sources, the nonprofit – based in Spokane and Bremerton – will provide low-interest, deferred-payment loans to homebuyers that meet income requirements and are looking to settle in Bremerton.

The loans aim to help qualifying families meet their obligations to bank lenders by bridging the gap on down payments, contributing to closing costs and reducing monthly mortgage payments to keep them within reach.

According to the Community Frameworks website, homebuyers in its program “often pay the same or less monthly to own their own home than they had been paying in rent.”

HUD funding comes from the federal HOME program, which administers nationwide grants “designed to increase homeownership and affordable housing opportunities for low and very low-income Americans,” according to the HUD website.

“Many people face challenges to homeownership,” a statement from Community Frameworks reads. “Some buyers are having a difficult time saving enough funds for down payment and closing costs. Others face an ‘affordability gap’ – the amount of the loan they qualify for based on their income is not high enough to purchase a home in their area.”

According to the real estate website Zillow, Bremerton home prices have been rising steadily since 2013. The average home price is now $299,000, up from about $183,000 six years ago.

In order to qualify for the program, households cannot earn more than $66,100 per year for a family of four. Full income requirements can be found here.

For more information, or to apply for the program, visit the Community Frameworks website, or contact Lelaine Keith at (360) 377-7738 ext. 2.