HELP Grant Assists Mississippi Homebuyer With Down Payment and Closing Costs

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KILN, Miss., April 3, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Justin Waits knew he would be a homeowner one day, so when he found his perfect home, he contacted The First, A National Banking Association (The First) about a mortgage and learned he could qualify for a grant to help with his down payment and closing costs.

The First utilizes the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas's Homebuyer Equity Leverage Partnership (HELP) program, which provides grants to assist first-time, income-qualified homebuyers with down payments and closing costs.

"I was saving money for a down payment, but when I found the home listed for such a good price, I wanted to jump on it," Mr. Waits said.

Mr. Waits qualified for a $5,000 HELP grant and was able to close on his home in April 2012, and move in the next month. The assistance meant he wouldn't have to part with his 1993 Nissan 240, which he had been restoring for years.

"I was very excited to receive the grant," he said. "I actually had my car up for sale in order to get the down payment for my home, and when the grant came through, I was able to keep my car."

Since 2011, The First has used HELP funds to assist five families with home purchases.

"Mr. Waits is an example of a hard-working citizen who had the goal of homeownership. The FHLB Dallas programs are tools that help make those dreams become a reality," said Jerome Brown, vice president and director of community development for The First. "The First is very excited to play an integral part in helping individuals reach their goals, whether they are individual goals, homeownership, small business, or economic development."

HELP grants are available through FHLB Dallas member institutions, such as The First, to assist income-qualified, first-time homebuyers with down payments and closing costs on newly constructed or existing homes. For 2013, FHLB Dallas made $1 million in HELP funds available to its members on a first-come, first-served basis.

Mr. Waits is thrilled to be living in his three-bedroom, two-bathroom home in Kiln, Mississippi.

"There is no wasted space. It's a very good design on an acre of land," he said. He also said he is glad to not be throwing his money away in rent each month.

He has since recommended the HELP program to friends. "I'm very proud to be a homeowner and I'm hoping that I can get it paid off a little early," he said.

About the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas is one of 12 district banks in the FHLBank System created by Congress in 1932. FHLB Dallas, with total assets of $35.8 billion as of December 31, 2012, is a member-owned cooperative that supports housing and community development by providing competitively priced loans and other credit products to approximately 900 members and associated institutions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas. For more information, visit the FHLB Dallas website at

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CONTACT: Corporate Communications Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (214) 441-8445

Source:Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas