Mayors Corner- Bayonne Mayor James Davis-New Jersey Has A Program For First-Time Homebuyers With Down Payment Assistance

          The NJHMFA provides a 30-year, fixed rate, government-insured loan for eligible homebuyers who are purchasing a home in New Jersey. The NJHMFA advises, “The First-Time Homebuyer Mortgage Program can be coupled with the NJHMFA Down Payment Assistance Program (DPA).”  That down payment program provides qualified homebuyers with up to $15,000 toward down payment and/or closing costs.  The amount provided varies according to the county where the property is being purchased.  Hudson County qualifies for the down payment assistance up to $15,000.

According to the NJHMFA, the down payment assistance “is a forgivable loan with no interest and no monthly payments.”  The down payment assistance “is forgiven if the borrower continuously resides in the premises as his/her principal residence for five years from the loan closing date and does not refinance or otherwise convey the first mortgage.” 

Who is eligible to take part in the mortgage program? The borrowers must purchase and occupy a residential home in New Jersey.  The borrowers must be first-time homebuyers.  The NJHMFA explains, “First-time homebuyer [is] defined as someone who has not had an ownership interest in their primary residence during the previous three years.”  Under the state’s definition, Hudson County is considered “an Urban Target Area.” 

According to the rules, “Borrowers of homes located within Urban Target Areas or Qualified Veterans do not need to be first-time homebuyers, but must not own another primary residence at closing.”  Buyers are required to occupy the purchased property as their primary residence “within 60 days of closing.” As a financial requirement, “borrowers must meet credit score and debt-to-income requirements.”

Eligible properties must be located in New Jersey. Those properties “must comply with any and all guidelines of the applicable insurer/guarantor such as FHA, VA, or USDA.”

The purchased property must be in one of two categories.  The property must be either “a single-family home, condominium, townhome, manufactured or mobile home, which is permanently affixed to real property owned by the borrower, OR a two- to four-family dwelling unit of which one unit is to be occupied by the borrower as his or her principal residence.”

The state programs have various income limits and loan terms.  Properties located in Hudson County and other Urban Target Areas are eligible for higher income limits than other parts of the state. 

To apply for the NJHMFA First-Time Homebuyer Mortgage Program, contact a participating lender.  Please go to to find the list of lenders.  For more information, call 1-800-NJ-HOUSE or visit  Please take advantage of this great New Jersey program.