The City and County of Honolulu is urging homebuyers to take advantage of interest-free loans to cover their down payments.

Low-income and moderate income families can apply for loans of up to $40,000 through a $250,000 federal grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

“These loans can be the difference between renting and ownership for families across Oahu,” said Mayor Kirk Caldwell in a press release. “With today’s mortgage rates at historic lows, a zero-interest down payment loan through the city can help families make their dream of homeownership a reality.”

Here’s more information from the city’s press release:

The city began accepting applications on July 1, for loans of up to $40,000, which will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis to qualified households. The loans are provided through $250,000 in Federal HOME funds administered by the Department of Community Services (DCS).

To qualify, applicants must provide five-percent of the purchase price as down payment and complete an approved homeownership course. A home inspection is also required. There is no cost to apply. Interested families are required to apply for a loan through a mortgage lender after being approved for a first mortgage.

For more information, please call the DCS Loan Branch at 768-7076.

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