The Skinny on Nevada Down Payment Assistance Programs

Dated: January 14 2024

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If you're dreaming of owning a home in Las Vegas but find the upfront costs daunting, you're not alone. Many potential homebuyers, including those searching for home buyer programs for bad credit, are in the same boat, but Nevada down payment assistance programs are here to help. These programs provide financial support to those who might not have the savings for the necessary upfront costs of the mortgage process. We'll delve into the various down payment assistance programs in Las Vegas, with a spotlight on the Home at Last and Home Means Nevada programs.

Home at Last: Opening Doors to Homeownership

Program Overview

Home at Last stands out as a flagship first time home buyer program Las Vegas, offering customizable loan options for a diverse range of homebuyers. Since its launch in 2006, Home at Last has enabled thousands of families to experience the joy of homeownership, solidifying its reputation as a premier first time home buyer Las Vegas program. The program's loan offerings include FHA, VA, USDA, and conventional loans, addressing various financial needs and establishing itself as a cornerstone among Las Vegas first time home buyer programs.

Loan Options and Assistance

Home at Last provides the flexibility to select a home loan type that aligns with your financial requirements, including FHA loans with minimum down payments of 3.5%, and VA and USDA loans that boast the benefit of zero down payment. Conventional loans typically require a minimum down payment of 3%. The down payment assistance from Home at Last can be applied towards these minimum down payments, easing the financial burden for homebuyers and facilitating home financing.

Income and Credit Requirements

To be eligible for the Home at Last program, borrowers must satisfy the standard loan underwriting criteria for their chosen financing option. Supported by the Nevada Housing Division, the program allows for an income maximum of $165,000, which varies by county, and promotes home affordability. Most loan types require a minimum credit score of 640, while manufactured homes have a higher threshold of 680.

Additional Benefits: Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC)

Beyond down payment assistance, Home at Last also offers the opportunity to combine the program with the Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC). The MCC grants eligible homebuyers additional qualifying income, improved debt ratios, and enhanced purchasing power. It also provides tax credits that amount to a portion of the mortgage interest paid annually, translating to considerable savings on federal income tax, which can positively impact monthly mortgage payments and interest rates.

Home Means Nevada: Empowering Rural Homebuyers

Program Overview

Another noteworthy down payment assistance program in Las Vegas is Home Means Nevada, which is particularly focused on rural Nevada homes in areas with populations under 150,000. The program's goal is to make homeownership more attainable and affordable for Nevada residents who haven't owned a home in the past three years, aligning with the Nevada Home is Possible initiative.

Down Payment Assistance and Forgiveness

Starting from August 1, 2023, the Home Means Nevada Rural DPA program will offer eligible homebuyers $25,000 in forgivable down payment grants. This aid is dedicated solely to the down payment and does not extend to closing costs. The assistance comes in the form of a second loan with no interest and no payments, and is fully forgiven after 3 years or by December 31, 2026, whichever comes first, making it a significant addition to first mortgage loans.

Mortgage Options and Expiration Date

To support a first time home buyer in Nevada, a participating lender provides a 30-year first mortgage with a low fixed rate. The Nevada first time home buyer grant may also be available to eligible applicants. Homebuyers can explore a list of participating lenders on the website. Notably, the Home Means Nevada Rural DPA program is set to expire on December 31, 2024, or when funds are exhausted, whichever comes first.

Enhancing Benefits with the Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC)

Echoing the Home at Last program, Home Means Nevada empowers homebuyers with first-time home buyer grants in Nevada, allowing them to pair their down payment assistance with the Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) program, thus bolstering the home is possible Nevada initiative. The MCC offers benefits like higher qualifying income, more manageable debt ratios, and a path to more affordable homeownership. Homeowners can benefit from the MCC tax credits throughout the loan's duration, provided the home remains their primary residence.

How to Apply for Down Payment Assistance Programs

Now that you're equipped with information about the two primary home buying process options for first-time home buyers in Nevada, you might be curious about how to apply. Here are some home buying tips in a step-by-step guide to assist you in beginning your homeownership journey:

  1. Contact an approved lender: Reach out to a lender who is approved to offer the Home at Last or Home Means Nevada programs.  
  2. Express your interest: Inform your lender that you want to buy a home using the specific down payment assistance program you're interested in.
  3. Explore additional benefits: Inquire about the Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) program and its potential benefits for your situation.
  4. Complete the application process: Follow the lender's guidance to complete the necessary paperwork and provide any required documentation.
  5. Attend homebuyer education: Participate in the mandatory homebuyer education program, which equips you with essential knowledge and tools for successful homeownership.


Don't let the absence of initial funds deter you from realizing your dream of homeownership in Las Vegas. The Home at Last and Home Means Nevada first time home buyer programs in Nevada stand ready to assist you. These programs offer tailored loan solutions and forgivable down payment assistance, simplifying the purchase of your first home. Whether you're a veteran, a rural homebuyer, or in search of financial support, these programs offer valuable resources. Embark on your homeownership path by exploring these down payment assistance programs and turning your dream into reality.

Keep in mind, the Nevada Housing Authority is committed to empowering low and middle-income Nevadans to pursue the American dream of owning a home. Reach out to an approved lender today and begin your homeownership journey with the backing of affordable housing initiatives.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be considered as financial or legal advice. Please consult with a qualified professional for personalized assistance regarding your specific situation.

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Alisha Wagner

Alisha Wagner is real estate professional who is passionate about educating buyers and sellers on the real estate process. She is committed to providing exceptional client service, follow-up, honesty,....

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