Home$tart / Home$tart Plus

2015 Home$tart Program Year

The Seattle Bank will offer approximately $1.7 million through its 2015 Home$tart Program. To make the best use of Home$tart Program funds, we encourage Seattle Bank members to:

Please note that the proposed merger between the Seattle Bank and the Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines (Des Moines Bank) will not impact the Seattle Bank’s 2015 offering of AHP and Home$tart.

Home$tart and Home$tart Plus promote homeownership by helping homebuyers earning up to 80 percent of area median income, adjusted for family size, purchase a home. The program assists Home$tart or Home$tart Plus eligible households, who, but for the receipt of Home$tart Program subsidy, would not be able to afford to purchase or rehabilitate a home.

  • The Home$tart Program provides a maximum grant of $5,000.
  • The Home$tart Plus Program provides homebuyers currently receiving public housing assistance with a maximum grant of $10,000.
  • Home$tart and Home$tart Plus grants may be used for downpayments, closing costs, or rehabilitation of an owner-occupied housing unit—including a condominium or cooperative housing unit—to be used as the homebuyer’s primary residence. Grants may be used in combination with funds from other sources.

Since their inception in 1995, Home$tart and Home$tart Plus have granted more than $47.4 million to help over 9,500 eligible homebuyers purchase a home.

For Homebuyers

Prospective homebuyers must apply for Home$tart grants through a Seattle Bank participating member financial institution. Please contact a member institution for more information about Home$tart and Home$tart Plus and to find out how to apply.

To participate in Home$tart or Home$tart Plus, a homebuyer must:

  • Demonstrate that their household does not exceed 80% of area median income by discussing the types of income received by the household with the Seattle Bank member with whom they are working, and providing required income documentation as directed by the member.
  • Complete a homebuyer education course that meets Seattle Bank requirements.
  • Purchase a home within one year of enrollment in the program.
  • Agree to place a recorded, five-year deed restriction on the home to be purchased, as directed by the member.
    • If the home is sold within five years of purchase, a pro-rata share of the Home$tart or Home$tart Plus grant must be repaid by the homebuyer, unless certain conditions for forgiveness are met.
For Member Financial Institutions

To participate in Home$tart and Home$tart Plus, Seattle Bank members must sign and return an annual Home$tart and Home$tart Plus Regulatory Agreement governing the program year in which the member is participating. Other requirements apply for members who have not previously participated in the program—please contact the Community Programs team via the contact information at the bottom of this page for more information.

Members currently approved to participate in the 2015 Home$tart and Home$tart Plus programs may enroll new homebuyers at any time, subject to funds availability. To determine if first-come, first-served funds are available, log in to the Community Investment Services section of our website. Please do not submit an enrollment before checking the availability of funds.

Please note: Members must provide the homebuyers they enroll with at least one financial or other Seattle Bank-approved incentive that is beyond those offered by their institution through the normal course of business. Examples of incentives include, but are not limited to; a free credit report, free flood certificate, or lower or special interest rate (if the member does not already provide these services to all customers). If the member institution is not providing the principal mortgage, acting as the Home$tart or Home$tart Plus “pass-through” is an acceptable “other” incentive.

To qualify a homebuyer for Home$tart or Home$tart Plus, Seattle Bank members must:

  • Complete the Seattle Bank’s Home$tart and Home$tart Plus Annual Income Calculation Worksheet to verify income for every member of the household over the age of 18. Please refer to our Income Calculation FAQ for information regarding the most efficient way to calculate income and enroll homebuyers.
  • Ensure that the homebuyer’s household income is at or below 80 percent of HUD-defined area median income in the homebuyer’s county of current residence, adjusted for family size. Please visit the HUD website for current income limit guidelines.
  • Ensure that students over 18 who are permanent residents of the household do not have a reasonable expectation to exceed the 80% area median income limit upon graduation, and have completed the Student Status Questionnaire.
  • Submit a complete enrollment packet, including both pages of the Home$tart and Home$tart Plus Enrollment and Certification form, all pages of the Home$tart and Home$tart Plus Income Calculation Worksheet, and required income documentation, to the Seattle Bank at least 60 days prior to the anticipated mortgage closing date.
  • Ensure that homebuyers who are using co-signers to qualify for a mortgage are not enrolled in the program.
  • Ensure that the homebuyer successfully completes a Seattle Bank-approved homebuyer education course prior to requesting disbursement.

Participating member financial institutions may distribute up to $300,000 of Home$tart and Home$tart Plus funding each program year. This is not a guarantee of funds, but rather the maximum amount one member can distribute if there are sufficient funds available.

To request a User ID for the Community Investment Services section of the website, click on “Register Here” under “First Time Visitors” on the Login page. Please contact the Community Programs team via the contact information at the bottom of this page with any questions.

To learn more about Home$tart and Home$tart Plus, please review:

Questions? Please contact Jessica Grant (206.340.2464) or Mandie Ludlam (206.340.2389).