“There’s little doubt it’s been a tough year for new homebuyers,” says INB Mortgage Lender Karen Cabrera based in Galesburg, IL. “That’s why the IHDAccess Forgivable program is so exciting. We’ll be able to get qualifying buyers up to $6,000 toward down payment and closing costs. That can make the difference from NOT getting a new home TO getting a new home.”

Young couple having a video call

IHDAccess Forgivable loans, now offered by INB mortgage lenders, offer qualifying Illinois homebuyers with down payment assistance that doesn’t have to be repaid. IHDAccess Forgivable highlights include:

  • 4% of the purchase price up to $6,000 in assistance for down payment and closing costs, forgiven monthly over 10 years – it does not have to be repaid;
  • A fixed rate first mortgage with an affordable interest rate and
  • Available to first-time and repeat homebuyers statewide.

Can Be the ‘Push’ Toward Homeownership

This program is wonderful for would-be homebuyers who don’t have funds for a down payment. In some cases, this might be the little push someone needs to get into a home. It’s important to note this isn’t just for first time homebuyers, any Illinois homebuyer who meets income and other requirements can get the money.

The IHDAccess Forgivable mortgage has two components: 

  1. A 1st mortgage that comes with a fixed mortgage rate. This is what finances most of the home purchase.
  2. A 2nd mortgage, also known as the “silent second,” that is made up of the assistance or forgivable portion of the loan. The homeowners don’t pay this if they stay in the house for 10 years.

The first, traditional mortgage program is pretty standard because it’s the type of loan most people get on a home. The second mortgage requires a second set of loan documents, but once our lenders explain that second mortgage is actually the assistance and that it will be forgiven after 10 years, the rest is easy to understand. 

Considerations Before Accepting Assistance

Springfield-based lender Natalie Dodson says any program that can help even one customer is great. “There are things to consider before taking advantage of the assistance. The customer would be penalized for refinancing to a lower rate, for example, or if they decide to move before the 10 years is up, there is a penalty.”

“The program also requires homeowners’ education, this is not exclusive to IHDA,” Natalie explains. “Education is part of several other programs like Down Payment Plus, Home Ready, etc. and most buyers do not complain because taking the education courses results in them getting a grant, better rate, etc.”

When talking to customers, Natalie makes sure they understand extra documentation is required that’s not needed with a typical mortgage loan. “I tell them they’ll need to get this documentation even after the loan closes, and they will have to get the requested documents almost the same day.”

Below is a list of IHDAccess Forgivable loan eligibility requirements:

  • Meet the household income and purchase price limits;
  • Have a credit score of at least 640;
  • Potential home is located in Illinois;
  • Contribute $1,000 or 1% of the purchase price, whichever is greater;
  • Live in the home as primary residence; and
  • Complete homeownership counseling prior to close (online and in-person options available).

If you have questions, contact me or any INB mortgage lender.

Karen Cabrera, NMLS#742269

Natalie Dodson, NMLS#574151