First Time Homebuyer Program


CHDC created its First Time Homebuyer Program in 2002 to ensure that residents of the neighborhoods where we were developing affordable homes would be prepared to buy the homes that we built. Since then, CHDC has assisted more than 600 households purchase homes. Nearly half of these homes are properties that CHDC either developed or assisted other affordable housing developers by qualifying eligible buyers for their developments.

CHDC's First Time Homebuyer Program helps low to moderate income potential homeowners surmount the barriers they commonly experience. For example, lower income buyers can have difficulty qualifying for loans in today's lending environment, and competing with investors purchasing affordable properties in our communities. CHDC emphasizes planning for homeownership. We educate buyers about loan products, and counsel them to prepare for lending requirements and obtain financing they can afford.This helps avoid future problems and build equity over time. As an indication of our success, foreclosure among the 600+ homebuyers who’ve completed this program and purchased their first home is extremely rare.

How the Program Works

Through a combination of informational workshops and individual counseling, CHDC's First Time Homebuyers Program will teach you everything from preparing yourself financially to completing your purchase. Once you have completed 8 hours of group education, in person or online education, meet with your counselor, entered into a purchase contract, CHDC will issue you the First Time Homeowner Education Certificate of Completion. The certificate is a HUD requirement for many lenders and many down payment assistance programs. If requested, we can send your certificate directly to your title company. We will also inform qualified buyers of special financing opportunities to ensure the purchase is affordable.

To purchase your first home you will typically need:

  • First Time Homebuyer Workshop Certification
  • A positive credit report
  • Money available for down payment and closing costs for the home you wish to purchase.
  • Enough household income to make loan payments and meet your other existing expenses.

By completing the workshops and counseling, you can obtain:

  • First Time Homebuyer Workshop Certification
  • Credit Counseling
  • Loan Qualification Analysis
  • Loan Document Review
  • Budget Planning
  • Down Payment Assistance and Referrals
  • Deed Restriction Counseling
  • Lender Referrals
  • Real Estate Referrals

Workshops and counseling are offered in English and Spanish. The workshop is free but we charge a $20 credit check fee (If client provide a current credit report with credit score, the credit fee will be waived) and a $20 materials fee which includes a copy of Realizing the American Dream: A Manual for Homebuyers, published by NeighborWorks America.

The online Home Buyer Education and counseling is also offered in English and Spanish. The fee is $99.00/ Per Registration on America's Premier On-line Homebuyer Education and $20 credit check fee (if client provide a current credit report with credit score, the credit fee will be waived).

Click HERE to start your online course.

Program Enrollment

In order to attend a First Time Homebuyer Workshop, you must first attend an Orientation, and submit a completed Intake Form with all requested attachments. Applications are reviewed in the order in which they are received.

Orientations are held on every second Wednesday at 6:30 pm of every month at JFK Library, Joseph Room, 505 Santa Clara Street, Vallejo CA 94590.

Check the CALENDAR for the next First Time Homebuyer Orientation near you.

Please download the Intake Form below. You can turn in the Intake Form and copies of the required documents at the orientation, fax them to (510) 215-9276, email them to, or mail/drop them off at our office at:

  • CHDC Homebuyer Program
  • 1535-A Fred Jackson Way
  • Richmond, CA 94801

Please note that we cannot accept original documents and we cannot make copies of your original documents at our office.

For additional questions, information in Spanish, or disability accommodations, please call us at: (510) 412-9290 x226 or (707) 652-7861 x226.

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