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Go from renting to owning your own home!

Central Iowa Regional Housing Authority (CIRHA) has designed a new program to help low income families who are eligible for the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) to become homeowners. Under this program families may choose a house for purchase anywhere in the CIRHA service area, instead of using their voucher for rental assistance.

Who is Eligible?

  • First time home buyers, displaced homeowners, or have not owned a home during the last three years.
  • Must satisfy the minimum income requirement.
  • Must satisfy the minimum employment requirement.
  • Not have defaulted on a mortgage securing debt.
  • Not have had present ownership interest in a residence at the commencement of home ownership assistance.
  • Complete all necessary home ownership counseling sessions. Counseling sessions include the following:

– Preparing for Homeownership
– Shopping for a home
– Obtaining a mortgage
– Closing the loan
– Life as a successful homeowner

Must be financially capable to qualify for CIRHA approved financing.

The House…

Houses proposed for purchase must pass HUD Housing Quality Standards. A family desiring to buy a home through this program must have the property inspected, at the family’s expense, by an independent home inspector selected by the family. Home inspections must include the home’s major systems and components, interior and exterior, roofing, plumbing, electrical and heating systems and lead based paint.

Monthly costs of owning and maintaining the home will be calculated to help determine its eligibility for purchase and the amount of mortgage subsidy. Some expenses included in the cost are mortgage principal and interest, real estate taxes, private mortgage insurance, homeowners insurance, maintenance allowance, allowance for repairs and replacement of major systems, utilities, and any condominium or homeowners association fees.

Steps to Owning Your Own Home…

  • Apply and be determined eligible to participate in the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher rental assistance program.
  • Attend a CIRHA briefing session.
  • Participate in Homebuyer education.
  • Recieve a pre-approval from a mortgage lender based upon your Housing Choice Voucher Program estimated subsidy.
  • Find a house to purchase in the CIRHA service area and negotiate a satisfactory price with the seller.
  • You have your purchase agreement approved by CIRHA.
  • You and CIRHA have separate home inspections performed on the property.
  • You comply with all terms set forth by your mortgage lender.
  • You make settlement on the property and begin making payments on the mortgage.
  • Your housing assistance subsidy is converted to assistance with your mortgage payments for up to 15 years, or an unlimited term for elderly and/or disabled.

For more information contact CIRHA

(515) 986-1882 or email questions to

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