From the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains to the vibrant capital of Raleigh to the well-known Outer Banks, there’s something in North Carolina for everyone. And if you are looking to buy your first home there, the state has several statewide and local programs that can help with the financial components of this big decision.
Who Qualifies as a First-Time Homebuyer in North Carolina?
Like most states, North Carolina adheres to the federal policy that a first-time homebuyer is someone who has not owned a home within the last three years. This allows repeat buyers to apply for these programs if enough time has lapsed since selling their previous home. Additionally, most programs have first-time status exemptions for active duty military and veterans.
Statewide First-Time Homebuyer Programs
The North Carolina Housing Finance Agency (NCHFA) has several programs to support new homebuyers.
Community Partners Loan Pool
The Community Partners Loan Pool (CPLP) provides down payment assistance in the form of a zero-interest, deferred second mortgage. You can be approved for up to 20 percent of the sales price, not to exceed $30,000, when combined with the NC Home Advantage Mortgage program (see below). You must work within a list of preapproved partners, and income, credit score and sales price requirements apply. Visit the CPLP webpage for more information.
NC Home Advantage Mortgage
This program is a great resource for middle to low-income families looking to purchase a new home and is available for first-time and repeat buyers. Applicants can apply for down payment assistance (up to 5 percent of the loan), as well as up to 100 percent financing on FHA, USDA and VA loans. Credit score and income requirements apply; visit the NC Home Advantage Mortgage website for more details.
NC 1st Home Advantage Down Payment
For first-time buyers looking specifically for down payment assistance, this program can provide up to $8,000 toward a down payment in a zero-interest loan. After you live in the home for 15 years, the loan becomes fully forgiven and does not need to be paid back. There are credit score, income and sales price requirements; you can find full details on the 1st Home Advantage Down Payment webpage.
NC Home Advantage Tax Credit
This program works jointly with the mortgage credit certificate (MCC) program that is available in several other states. If approved for an MCC, which is applied for at the same time as a mortgage, first-time homebuyers and military veterans can claim a tax credit for 50 percent of the interest they pay on a newly built home (up to $2,000 per year for every year you’re in your home). To determine eligibility and apply, visit NCHFA’s Home Advantage Tax Credit website.
Location-Specific First-Time Homebuyer Programs
Through the city’s Neighborhood Development Department, homebuyers in Greensboro can apply for up to $10,000 in down payment assistance, not to exceed 20 percent of the overall purchase price. The loan is completely forgiven after five years of living in the home. For more information, visit Greensboro’s city website.
Ready to Make North Carolina Home?
Whether you’re just getting started or are ready for retirement, there’s plenty to do in North Carolina. Visit a beach in the summer, go skiing in the winter and get to know the state’s thriving cities and towns every day of the year. What are you waiting for? Your new home in North Carolina is waiting.
The links on this site were researched by NewHomeSource. This is as cohesive a list as possible. Individual homebuyers should contact entities to fully understand requirements and processes.
Other North Carolina Resources
Mia Zozobrado joined Builders Digital Experience (BDX) in 2019 as a content writer. A graduate of Southwestern University with a degree in English, Mia is passionate about the written word and making connections. Outside of work, Mia also serves on the Board of Directors for the Writers’ League of Texas.