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Another round of funding for a down payment program to help homebuyers in California will be available this spring, and there are changes to the application process.

The Dream for All program lends borrowers up to 20% of a home’s price; when the buyer sells or refinances, they repay 20% of the appreciated value to the state of California. That money is then used to fund the next round of down payment assistance.

The round of funding this spring will be different from last year

In 2022, $300 million was set aside for homebuyers on a first-come, first-served basis, and the money was allocated to approximately 2,000 applicants in just 11 days. This year, the amount of funding available to recipients is $250 million, and a lottery process will be used to determine which applicants receive loans.

Eric Johnson with the California Finance Agency said this round hopes to help between 1,600 and 2,000 more people. “You’ve got some time before that lottery opens in April to work with one of our approved lenders, get your paperwork together, make sure your credit score and debts are all squared away, and then you can put in an application for this lottery,” Johnson said.

The lottery will be open for a month, starting in the first week of April.

Among the requirements, at least one person on the application must either be a first-generation homebuyer or have been in the foster system to qualify. First-generation homeowners are applicants who haven’t owned a home in the past seven years, and their parents don’t currently own a home, Johnson said. Applicants also need to have a credit score of at least 680 and “some good debt-to-income ratios,” Johnson said.

For more information on the program, visit the California Housing Finance Agency website.