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Consumer LAW PA Consumer LAW PA
  • Serving the Philadelphia Metropolitan Area
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How to Buy and Keep Your Own House in Philadelphia


Homeownership is a big financial goal for a lot of people.  Unfortunately, it is very hard to achieve unless you already have some assets other than the percentage of your employment income that you have managed to put into savings.  Qualifying for a mortgage and following through with the purchase is only the first hurdle you must clear.  While owning your house gives you a source of stability that renters do not have, it also comes with many expenses that can be hard to cover if you are living paycheck to paycheck, as many households that own a house encumbered by a mortgage are.  You can be one emergency expense away from missing a mortgage payment and sliding toward a path to foreclosure.  Philadelphia offers several programs to help consumers with low and moderate incomes buy a house or duplex and to provide emergency financial assistance to homeowners facing an immediate risk of foreclosure.  To find out more about how to qualify for a home mortgage or keep your existing mortgage loan in good standing, contact a Philadelphia mortgage debt lawyer.

The Philly First Home Program

The Philly First Home Program provides grants to eligible applicants, and the recipient applies the grant money toward the down payment on a house or duplex.  Condominium units are not among the possible properties that you can purchase with the grant money from this program.  The grant amount is $10,000 or six percent of the purchase price of the house you are buying, whichever is less.

To qualify for the Philly First Home Program, you must not currently own a home, and you must not have owned one in the past three years.  Your annual household income must not exceed the area median income (AMI).  As of 2023, the AMI in Philadelphia is $103,000 for a household of three people.  It is less for smaller households and more for larger households.

The Foreclosure Prevention Grant Program

Philadelphia also offers a grant program for homeowners who are struggling to keep up with their mortgage payments.  The Foreclosure Prevention Grant Program pays qualifying applicants an amount equivalent to three monthly payments on their mortgage loan, enough to cure a foreclosure and avoid default.  To qualify for this program, you must have missed at least one monthly payment on your home mortgage.  You must show that you have no other way to bring your payments current and that you will be at immediate risk of homelessness if you are evicted from your house.  The maximum income for eligible applicants is considerably less than 60 percent of the AMI.  For a family of three to qualify for this program in 2023, your annual household income cannot exceed $51,050.

Contact Louis S. Schwartz About Protecting Yourself Against Home Mortgage Foreclosure

A Philadelphia consumer law attorney can help you if mortgage debt is a major source of financial stress.  Contact Louis S. Schwartz at to set up a free, confidential consultation.


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