New York City Housing Connect (HPD)
- The New York City Housing Connect Program is an affordable housing portal which provides rentals and sales in all five boroughs. Housing options are offered through a lottery system. To qualify, your household must meet the household income and size requirement for a unit in the affordable development. All of the units offered through NYC Housing Connect are financed by the NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development (HPD) and/or the Housing Development Corporation (HDC). Thus, units are not only affordable, but their rents raise at a steady and slow rate.
Learn more about the NYC Housing Connect program and apply today here. You can also visit NYC Housing Connect's 'Learn' page for a series of instructional videos that walk you through every step of the application process.
- There are no uniform eligible requirements. There are household income and size requirements outlined on each specific lottery page, but each lottery has a different household income range and size requirement.
- Veteran Preference
- Preference, established on a building-by-building case, is given to applicants that meet one or more of the following criteria:
- Persons with Mobility, Hearing, and/or Vision Disabilities
- Current Community Board Residents (CB)
- Municipal Employees
- Project-specific Preferences
- As part of the agreements set forth for a specific development, additional preferences may apply. Such preferences may include, but are not limited to, preferences for Seniors or Veterans. These preferences are listed in the advertisement for the development.
- How to Apply?
- You may have a paper application mailed to you. Information on how paper applications can be received and where complete applications must be sent are available in the details of any open lottery.
Per the expectation of NYC Housing Connect, you many only submit one application per household. You will be disqualified if more than one application is received per lottery for your household. If you submit an application online, you may NOT submit an application via mail. If you submit an application via mail, you may NOT submit an application online.
- The Housing Development Corporation (HDC) finances affordable rental properties reserved for households that meet certain income restrictions, commonly referred to as either low-income or middle-income. HDC provides an updated list of re-rental units, affordable housing units which have recently been vacated, on their Find webpage. Unlike NYC Housing Connect units, potential renters must request applications to apply.
View the current list of HDC low-income and middle-income re-rentals here.
- Similar to NYC Housing Connect, there are specific household income and size requirements for each household; each application has a different household income range and size requirement.
- How to Apply?
- Applications must be requested via the email provided on each specific application flyer. Mail applications can be requested in the same way, with a request mailing address provided.
Mitchell-Lama (City, HPD)
- The Mitchell-Lama Housing Program provides affordable rental and cooperative housing to moderate- and middle-income families. There are two separate Mitchell-Lama program at the city and state level. For both city and state Mitchell-Lama programs, applicants will need to apply to a development separately, but you cannot apply to more than one development at a time. Mitchell-Lama apartments are sold or rented through waiting lists kept by each development. Mitchell-Lama in New York City is administered by the Department of Housing Preservation & Development (HDP).
- Learn more about HPD’s Mitchell-Lama program here.
- Determined on a case-by-case basis
- All Mitchell-Lama developments will have different eligibility requirements based on income limits, family size, and apartment size.
- Veteran Preference
- Veterans residing in New York State may be entitled to a preference for Mitchell-Lama developments with an open waiting list.
- How to Apply:
- In order to apply for NYC Mitchell-Lama, you must create an account and apply through Mitchell-Lama Connect.
- You will need to mail a post card to the address and specific P.O. box assigned to each individual unit size (i.e. if you are applying for a studio, the P.O. box will be different from a one-bedroom).
Mitchell-Lama (State, HCR)
VA-Backed Purchase Home Loan
- The VA Purchase Loan offer competitive interest rates for veterans seeking down payment assistance to build, buy or improve a home. VA’s Purchase Loan is a VA-Backed Home Loan which means the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs provides a VA guaranty that ensures lenders receive some or all losses from a potential foreclosure. The Purchase Loan has the following features:
- No down payment
- Better terms and interest rates than other loans from private banks, mortgage companies, or credit unions (also called lenders)
- The ability to borrow up to the Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac conforming loan limit
- No need for private mortgage insurance (PMI) or mortgage insurance premiums (MIP)
- Fewer closing costs
- No penalty fee if you pay the loan off early
- Learn more about the VA’s Purchase Loan, including full program features here.
- You must apply for a Certificate of Eligibility (VA Form 26-1880) that tells lenders and the VA you qualify for a VA home loan
- Further eligibility details must be discussed with the VA and/or your lender
- How to apply?
- First, to apply for a Certificate of Eligibility, you must:
- Determine your eligibility based on how long and when you served
- Apply via three methods:
- By mail
- Fill out a Request for a Certificate of Eligibility (VA Form 26-1880) and mail it to the address for your regional loan center
- Apply through your lender
- Second, once you've determined you are financially ready to purchase a home, find a lender (private bank, mortgage company, or credit union) to get a VA Home Loan
- For a comprehensive guide on how to buy a home with a VA-backed purchase loan, read more here.
- VA Contact Information
- Start your home purchasing process today. Share any questions you may have for the VA home loan programs with a home loan representative at 877-827-3702. Their hours are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. ET.
HomeFirst Down Payment Assistance Program
The HomeFirst Down Payment Assistance Program provides qualified homebuyers with up to $100,000 toward the down payment or closing costs on a 1-4 family home, a condominium, or a cooperative in one of the five boroughs of New York City.
A prospective homebuyer must:
- Be a first-time homebuyer
- Complete a homebuyer education course taught by an HPD-approved counseling agency
- Have their own savings to contribute to the down payment or closing costs
- Meet program income eligibility requirements
- Make a minimum down payment of 3% of the purchase price towards the home purchase
- 1% of the contract deposit must be sourced from the buyer's own funds
- Purchase a 1-4 unit family home, a condominium, or a cooperative for owner-occupancy in one of the five boroughs of New York City
- Pass a Housing Quality Standards (HQS) inspection before purchase
- Live in the home for at least:
- 10 years if the loan received is less than or equal to $40,000
- 15 years if the loan is greater than $40,000
- Have a maximum household income up to 80% AMI available on the HPD website:
- 1 Family Household -- $74, 800
- 2 Family Household -- $85, 450
- 3 Family Household -- $96, 150
- 4 Family Household -- $106, 800
- 5 Family Household -- $115, 350
- 6 Family Household -- $123, 900
- 7 Family Household -- $132, 450
- 8 Family Household -- $141, 000
For additional information on how to apply for the HomeFirst Down Payment Assistance Program, please visit the program’s website here.
Homebuyer Dream Program (HDP)
Learn more about the HDP Program here. You can also reach out to a 2023 Homebuyer Dream Program Participation Member to get more information.
The Homebuyer Dream Program (HDP) offers grants up to $10,000 to eligible first-time homebuyers purchasing a home through one of the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York's (FHLBNY) approved community-based, member lenders. The FHLBNY will grant up to $9,500 towards down payment and closing cost assistance to eligible first-time homebuyers. Additionally, the HDP offers up to $500 towards the defrayment of homeownership counseling costs which will be provided for the use of the household via the member to the non-profit counseling agency. The amount of the defrayment will be added to the grant.
- Must be first-time homebuyer (same as First Home Club)
- Must be below 80% AMI in the county that the house will be purchased
- Must work a minimum of 32 hours
- Must have a personal savings of $1000
- Income Limit its based on where they intend to purchase, not where they currently reside
- Homeownership counseling must be completed prior to applying for the grant
- Counseling certification is good for 18 months
- If the property is a multi-family, 75% of market rent will be added to income
- Non-occupant co-borrower income to be included in the income limit
- Minimum equity contribution of $1,000
- Minimum equity contribution may be gifted
- 120-day commitment from date of grant approval
- No longer a "matched savings" program
- First come, first served
- Potential to run out of money
- Must have purchase contract fully executed prior to reservation request
Graduate to Homeownership
The Graduate to Homeownership Program offers recent college graduates low-interest mortgages, down payment assistance, and homebuyer education resources to purchase their first home in certain upstate New York communities. Graduate to Homeownership is administered by the New York State office Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) through the State of New York Mortgage Agency (SONYMA). Note that to apply to this program the home you are purchasing must be in a select few communities in New York State, including: Capital Region, Central New York, Finger Lakes, Mid-Hudson, Mohawk Valley, North Country, Southern Tier, and Western New York. The program’s features include:
- Competitive 30-year fixed interest rates
- May be combined with other SONYMA grants and assistance programs, such as:
- Down Payment Assistance Loans to help with your down payment
- Remodel NY for funds to help with repairs and remodeling
- Available for first-time homebuyers who have received an associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree within the past 48 months from an academic program recognized by the U.S. Department of Education
- You must have good credit, stable employment, and be able to make monthly mortgage payments
- You must occupy the property as your primary residence
- Regional income limits apply and vary by county
Learn about Graduate to Homeownership here.
Down Payment Assistance Loan (DPAL)
The Down Payment Assistance Loan helps homeowners pay their down payment assistance and closing costs. If you are required to carry mortgage insurance, a DPAL can be used to cover all or a portion of your premium, which can reduce your monthly mortgage payment significantly. The program’s features include:
- 0% interest rate
- No monthly payments
- Forgiven after 10 years
- Minimum loan amount: $1,000
- Maximum loan amount: 3% of the purchase price (up to $15,000) or $3,000, whichever is highest
Learn more about the Down Payment Assistance Loan here.
Give Us Credit
Interested in applying for a SONYMA Give Us Credit Loan? Contact one of our Participating Lenders for more information or contact us directly for a referral:
The Give Us Credit Program qualifies eligible first-time homebuyers by expanding the criteria used to evaluate responsible financial management, increasing eligibility to families and individuals who rely on non-traditional savings and sources of income, and by offering greater flexibility for potential borrowers who have overcome past financial hardships.
Center for NYC Neighborhoods
Call 311 or 646-786-0888 and ask for The Center for NYC Neighborhoods or, Call toll free at 1-855-HOME-456 or, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Center for NYC Neighborhoods (CNYCN) promotes and protects affordable homeownership in New York so that middle- and working-class families can build strong, thriving communities. CNYCN provides the following assistance:
- Mortgage Help
- Supporting homeowners at risk of missing mortgage payments
- Foreclosure Help
- Helping homeowners get out of foreclosure
- Coastal Assistance
- Educating homeowners on how rising sea levels and flood insurance costs can affect homeownership
- Scam Prevention
- a. Protecting homeowners from common scams
- Rehabilitation and Retrofits
- a. Partners with programs that help with the cost of rehabs and retrofits
NYC Housing Ambassadors
Find a Housing Ambassador in your borough today.
Looking for affordable housing? The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development partners with community-based service providers in New York City who help people prepare and apply for affordable housing, including NYC Housing Connect. Housing Ambassadors can provide information and assistance with the application process. Housing Ambassadors do not provide housing directly, and they cannot guarantee that an applicant will receive an affordable unit through the lottery.