First Time Home Buyer Programs in New York State

New York First Time Home Buyer Programs

If you are a resident of New York looking to buy your first home, there is some good news. There are a variety of incentives and programs available to you through The State of New York Mortgage Agency. They offer five mortgage programs to assist first-time homebuyers with the purchase of a home in New York State. Their five mortgage programs feature competitive interest rates, low down payment requirements, flexible underwriting guidelines, no prepayment penalties and various forms of help with the down payment . Each of these features is designed to make your home purchase more affordable. All SONYMA loans are financed through the sale of tax exempt bonds. It will be well worth your time to educate yourself about the programs available to New York residents.

Programs Available to New York First Time Home Buyers

The primary agency in New York that exists to help first time buyers is The New York State Housing Finance Agency. The State of New York Mortgage Agency (SONYMA) offers five mortgage programs to assist first-time homebuyers with the purchase of a home in New York State.

Here is the information to contact SONYMA:

641 Lexington Avenue
4th Floor
New York, NY 10022
Telephone: (212) 688-4000
Fax: (212) 872-0789


Other Programs Throughout New York

In addition to the grant programs described above, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development provides home buyer assistance and grants in every state. There are multiple grant programs designed specifically for individuals and families that meet certain requirements, such as grants for people with disabilities so they can continue to live independently at home. It is well worth visiting HUD’s website to see what assistance is currently available to help buy your first home. For your convenience, simply go to this website.

Here is the contact information for the HUD office in New York:

New York Regional Office
Jacob K. Javits Federal Building
26 Federal Plaza
Suite 3541
New York, NY 10278-0068
Phone: (212) 264-8000
Fax: (212) 264-0246

There are also these local programs:

Albany Home Acquisition Program (HAP) (518) 434-5273

AHP offers a variety of down-payment assistance programs of its own. In addition, we’ve compiled this list of programs offered by municipalities and other nonprofit organizations throughout the region. Many (though not all) of these programs use HUD income limits. Confirm details and availability with each provider.

Binghamton First Ward Action Council Affordable HOME Program (AHP) (607) 231-2850

The First Ward Redevelopment Plan is a community planning initiative facilitated by the Department of Planning, Housing & Community Development, and funded by a Brownfield Opportunity Area grant from the New York State Division of Coastal Resources.
Buffalo Home Front Inc Down Payment & Closing Cost Assistance Program (DPCC) (716) 856-2952

HomeFront, Inc. provides potential low to moderate income clients with the opportunity to apply for the City of Buffalo’s American Dream Downpayment Initiative (ADDI) grant as well as the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB of NY) of New York’s down payment and closing cost assistance program. This grant provides income eligible clients, who are interested in purchasing a home in the City of Buffalo, with a grant of up to $5,000 for down payment and closing costs associated with purchasing their home.

Chautauqua County Federal Home Loan Bank of New York Affordable Housing Program (AHP) (716) 841-1603

The Federal Home Loan Bank of New York (FHLBNY) has awarded a $520,000 affordable housing grant to Fairport Apartments, Inc. “With this affordable housing award from the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, the Fairport Apartments will ensure that we are providing our seniors with safe, stable and affordable housing,” said representative Eric Massa (NY, 29).

Chemung, Schuyler & Steuben Counties – Tri County Housing Council HOME Program (607) 562-2477

Today, aided by Federal, State and Foundation funds, NWNA administers a variety of programs for neighborhood revitalization including loans and grants programs for housing rehabilitation. City wide programs include the Near Westside Home Improvement Program and the City of Elmira HOME program, funded by NYS AHC & NYS HTFC, these programs provide a portion of the cost for rehabilitation of owner occupied homes within the City of Elmira. The “One House at a Time” program allows NWNA to purchase a significantly deteriorated house and complete substantial renovations. Once renovations are completed, NWNA sells the home to a low to moderate-income homebuyer. NWNA also administers a “One Block at a Time” Program and a Historic District Paint Program, both of which are limited to the Near Westside Historic District.

Glens Falls First Time Homebuyer Program (FTHB) (518) 761-3833

The Department of Community Development offers housing rehabilitation grants for low to moderate income families and sponsors a first time homebuyers program.  All services are for the City of Glens Falls residents only, with the exception of the first time homebuyer’s program.

Hamburg Hometown Housing Program Existing Home (716) 648-6216

Community Development has many housing programs to offer income qualified town residents. All programs are bound by confidentiality! Funding for the town’s programs is provided by the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) through the Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG), the Home Investment Partnership Program (HOME) and the American Dream Downpayment Initiative (ADDI).
Multi Counties Bishop Sheen Ecumenical Housing Foundation Inc First Time Homebuyer HOME Program (FTHHP) (716) 461-4263

Owning a home is a dream shared by many Americans, and in fact, by people around the world. Within its 13-county service area, Sheen Housing has assisted numerous families of all ethnic backgrounds and with varying degrees of financial resources to achieve that goal of home ownership.  Sheen Housing does this by providing housing counseling, pre- and post-purchase/homebuyer counseling, foreclosure prevention/default counseling and closing cost assistance.

Multi Townships M-ARK Project Inc Program (FTHB) (845) 586-3500

Western Catskills Community Revitalization Council, Inc. was founded in 1981 and has concentrated its efforts on the creation of new housing and the improvement of existing housing and mixed use commercial buildings. Western Catskills targets housing programs that will best serve the needs of the low and moderate income residents of their service area. Toward that end, Western Catskills has developed, owns, and manages two 24 unit low/moderate-income senior housing projects, one in the Hamlet of Grand Gorge and one in the Village of Stamford. Western Catskills administers grants to first-time home buyers through the Affordable Housing and HOME Programs to assist families with the purchase of their first homes and grant funds to assist low/mod income families with much needed repairs and renovations to their homes with funding provided by The New York State Affordable Housing Corporation, The New York State Housing Trust Fund Corporation (HOME), and the CDBG program.

New York Bishop Sheen Ecumenical Housing Foundation Home Ownership Loan Program (716) 461-4263

Bishop Sheen Ecumenical Housing Foundation
1st Time Home Ownership Loan Program
• Eligible Counties: Monroe, Allegany, Cayuga, Chemung, Livingston, Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben, Tioga, Tompkins, Wayne
• Income limits apply
• Maximum loan amount $3,000
• Maximum loan term 5 years
• Buyer required to invest own funds in transaction

Rochester Home Expo Program (HOME) (716) 325-4663

The City of Rochester funds several programs to assist people who would like to buy a house. Learn more about the city’s housing programs, such as Home Expo, the Homesteading Lottery and more. In March, check out City Living Sundays. For real bargains in city property, check out the periodic City Real Estate Auction/Sales at

Rochester Home Purchase Assistance Program (HPAP) (716) 325-4663

The City of Rochester’s Home Purchase Assistance Program Grant (HPAP) provides down payment and closing cost assistance to first-time buyers who meet program requirements.  Grants of up to $3,000 are available for closing cost assistance to first-time buyers who are income eligible.

Rochester, HOME Rochester (HR) (716) 325-4663

Suffolk County Down Payment Assistance Program (DPAP) (516) 853-5705

Provides first-time homebuyers with federal funds for a portion of the downpayment 75% downpayment assistance is available towards the purchase of a principal residence, up to a maximum of $14,000 or $12,000, depending on income level. Serves the towns of Brookhaven, East Hampton, Huntington, Riverhead, Smithtown, Southampton, Southold, and Shelter Island. Call for more information.
Syracuse University Neighborhood Preservation Association Mortgage Assistance Program (MAP) (315) 476-5228

The major goal of the University Neighborhood Preservation Association (UNPA), is to help families and individuals purchase a home. Depending on available funds, UNPA can provide potential homeowners with a grant to help with mortgage closing costs. Our only requirement is owner occupancy.  Homes in the University Neighborhood are varied and appealing. Most are single-family dwellings, but many two- and three-family houses are available.

Ulster County Rural Ulster Preservation Company Direct Homeownership Assistance Program (DHAP) (845) 331-2140

Rural Ulster Preservation Company (RUPCO) was organized in 1981 by a small group of concerned residents serving the low income community who were aware, viscerally, of a need to improve and increase housing in Ulster County. The organization was spun out of the Community Action Agency and continues to serve on a county-wide basis. Broadly, the services are focused in the following areas: emergency financial assistance, rental assistance, single family home rehabilitation, new home buyer assistance, multifamily home rehabilitation, and as a developer/owner/manager of rental properties for the elderly, disabled, handicapped and households with special needs.

Yates County Keuka Housing Council Inc Home Ownership Program (HOP) (315) 536-8707

Keuka Housing Council’s Board of Directors and Staff review the needs of the community including the need for essential repairs to preserve aging homes, the provision of housing for modest income individuals/families, foreclosure prevention counseling and the necessary training for the Board and Staff to meet these needs.

Yates County New Construction Program (NCP) (315) 536-8707

You might also find this video helpful:

About Jennifer Cribsly

I'm a former real estate broker who specialized in helping first time buyers be able to purchase a home. Now full time mom, part time real estate owner/investor.
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