Michigan First-Time Home Buyer Programs of 2020

NerdWalletMay 13, 2020
Michigan First-Time Home Buyer Programs

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Need help buying your first home? The Michigan State Housing Development Authority helps with two loan programs, plus a down payment assistance program.

If you haven't owned a home in the last three years, you can qualify as a first-time home buyer. That means that if you owned a home but lost it more than three years ago in the housing crash, you may be able to get a fresh start under these programs.

National first-time home buyer programs

These national loan programs appeal to many first-time home buyers. Offered by most lenders, the loans have low down payment or flexible credit requirements.

MSHDA highlights and eligibility requirements

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority offers mortgage programs for both first-time home buyers and repeat buyers. The mortgages feature favorable, fixed interest rates and low down payment requirements, and they can be combined with the authority's down payment assistance program and mortgage tax credit.


  • Available for credit scores as low as 640.

  • Alternative credit review is available for some borrowers who have no credit score.

  • The minimum down payment is 3% and down payment assistance is available.

  • Available to first-timers as well as repeat home buyers in economically disadvantaged targeted areas such as the cities of Detroit, Grand Rapids, Flint and Dearborn (here's a list of target areas).

  • You have your choice of conventional, FHA, VA or USDA loans.


  • The home has to be your primary residence.

  • The 2020 sales price limit is $224,500.

  • There are income limits that vary by location.

  • Overall debt-to-income ratio of 45% or less.

  • You must attend a home buyer education course if you receive down payment assistance.

  • You have to contribute at least 1% of the loan amount, even with down payment assistance.

Compare MSHDA lenders

MSHDA first-time home buyer loan programs

Summary: 2020 MSHDA first-time home buyer programs

  • MI Home loan with favorable interest rates.

  • MI Home Loan Flex with favorable interest rates for first-time home buyers and repeat buyers.

  • MSHDA Down Payment Assistance offering help for down payment and closing costs.

  • Mortgage Credit Certificate to provide an annual tax credit.

Start out on the Michigan State Housing Development Authority's "Homeownership" page, which has links to information about the state's loan programs, including mortgage credit certificates and home buyer education classes.

If you need down payment assistance, take a look at MSHDA's down payment assistance page.

The authority's website maintains a county-by-county list of loan officers who do MI Home Loans.

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