A new program coming to Idaho could make buying a home easier for many families by providing matching grants of up to $7,500 toward a down payment.
More than 300 families or individuals around the state will be able to receive such a grant.
"Usually the largest hurdle for a family trying to get into a home is that front end piece of that the $7,500 and other matching funds will help make that home affordable," CEO of NeighborWorks Boise Buddy Compher Jr. said.
The NeighborhoodLIFT program is done through Wells Fargo and NeighborWorks America. It provides down payment assistance and home buyer education. It became a program back in February of 2012 and since then it's helped more than 13,000 people buy homes in different communities across the country.
Eligible participants can receive between $2,500 and $7,500 to purchase a home in Idaho. The goal is to make housing more affordable in the state.
"You know, the need is so critical,” Compher said. "Prices are escalating.”
To be eligible for a grant, the home buyer must not exceed 80 percent of the local area median income in the county based on family size where the home is located. For example, to be eligible in Ada County, a home buyer with a household size of up to four people must not have an income of more than $51,450.
Garden City Mayor John Evans said he's looking forward to this program coming to Idaho. He said it's targeted for working-class families and will be able to help people in his city.
"It allows folks to live near where they work,” he said. “It's very important that we aren't pushing our working class back out away from the city core."