Down payment assistance benefits homebuyers and the local economy


As home prices climb across the Valley, you may think buying a new home is beyond your reach. What if you had help with the down payment?

The Home in Five Advantage Program helped 17,000 homebuyers in the past five years and has made a major impact on their wealth and on the local economy. The Maricopa County and the Phoenix IDAs established the Home in Five Advantage Program in 2012 to provide down payment assistance to low- and moderate-income individuals and families to purchase new or existing homes.

The Program recently collaborated with local economists and found that during its first five years, the Home in Five Advantage Program created an economic impact of $400 million on the local economy. 

The new study also concluded that residents who bought through the Home in Five Advantage Program increased their consumer spending by approximately $72.9 million and accumulated $419 million in wealth. 


“When we started the Home in Five Advantage Program in 2012, the housing market was in the early stages of recovery and there were good deals to be had, but many people simply couldn’t take advantage of them because the down payment was too large,” said Shelby Scharbach, Executive Director of the Maricopa County IDA. “The Maricopa County and the Phoenix IDAs recognized that by providing some upfront assistance, we could get more people in homes and strengthen the local economy at the same time. This economic impact study shows just how successful we’ve been in helping low- and moderate-income individuals and families improve their lives.”

The study analyzed the economic and social benefits of the Program. Impacts are based on fees generated within the real estate and finance industries, increases in consumer spending from the reduction of housing costs (mortgage payments compared to renting), and wealth accumulation through principal repayment and appreciation.


“Homeownership gives individuals, families, and communities measurable financial and social benefits --from the equity they build in their new home, to improved educational futures for their children,” said Phoenix IDA CEO Juan Salgado. “The study demonstrates the power of helping those who may have thought homeownership was beyond their reach,” added Salgado. 

Through the Home in Five Advantage Program, qualified homebuyers receive down payment/closing cost assistance of up to 3 percent of the loan amount. An additional 1 percent assistance is also available to K-12 teachers, first responders, U.S. military personnel, veterans, and income-qualified borrowers.

For more information about the Program, including a list of approved participating lenders that can help determine if a buyer is qualified, please visit