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BEGIN Program

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The City of Palm Desert BEGIN Program (the ”Program”) provides a deferred repayment loan of up to $30,000 to low and moderate income first time homebuyers to facilitate the purchase of a new single-family home at Falcon Crest, a residential community in the City of Palm Desert which has been recognized by the California Department of Housing and Community Development as a BEGIN project.

Following repayment of an original issued BEGIN loan, the City will deposit such funds in a Re-Use Account and the City of Palm Desert will consider applications for direct use of funds, which will enable very low, low, and moderate income households to become or remain homeowners by providing in the form of loans and grants; First Time Homebuyer down payment assistance, home rehabilitation, homebuyer counseling, home acquisition and rehabilitation, self-help mortgage assistance programs, site development, predevelopment expenses incurred on homeownership development projects, and permanent financing for mutual housing or cooperative developments (as more fully described in Health and Safety Code section 50860 (c) and 50093) on a first come. Under the Reuse Plan the amount of assistance is dependent upon the activity funded. However, any single application shall not exceed the loan made on a per-unit basis as follows: (i) 10% for mortgage assistance; (ii) 15% for owner-occupied rehabilitation, and home acquisition with rehabilitation; (iii) $350 for homebuyer education; (iv) up to $20,000 per unit for technical assistance on a self-help housing development project; or whichever is less.

The City of Palm Desert’s BEGIN Program will maintain a list of approved primary lenders for this Program. Only approved lenders may participate in this program. Approved lenders must agree to participate in accordance with the Program guidelines. The list of approved lenders is updated at least once annually.

In order to be eligible for a BEGIN home loan, prospective Applicants must be First-time homebuyers who have not owned a home during the three-year period before the purchase of a home with BEGIN assistance. Applicants and household members must be able to document their legal residency status. The Applicant’s annual gross household income shall be calculated in accordance with the requirements of the California Code of Regulations (CCR) Title 25, Section 6914, and shall be less than or equal to 120% of area median household income for Riverside County adjusted for family size as published by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These income limits change slightly from year to year and will be published by the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). The Applicant’s household size and composition will comply with the City of Palm Desert Occupancy Standards. The Applicant’s assets will be utilized in determining household income as provided for under California law.

Applications will be accepted on a first come, first served basis. The Agency provides a Pre-Qualification Questionnaire and Checklist along with Program information to interested participants. For more information or to apply for assistance under this program, you may contact the Housing Department at (760) 346-0611, or download an application and submit with the requested documents on the application to our office.