DC Open Doors

Zero down payment purchase financing in Washington DC that most people qualify for.  And it’s easy!  New income cap for 2023: $199,200 (based on applicant qualifying income, not household income).  Maximum loan amount for 2023 $726,200.

Watch the video for more information!

The DC Open Doors loan provides zero down payment financing to purchasers in Washington DC.  The program lends the required down payment to the purchaser, which is eventually repaid (with no interest due) when the homeowner sells, moves out, or refinances their mortgage. This down payment assistance is paired with a mortgage at an interest rate set by DC (more info below).

Both conventional and FHA financing options are available, which means that the program will cover either the required 3% (conventional) or 3.5% (FHA) down payment.

Also, on the conventional DC Open Doors Program, the purchaser is eligible for a reduction in their mortgage insurance payments!  MI reduction is applicable if your income is under 80% of area median income, which in 2022 is $120,320


New in September 2019: Prior to September 2019, the down payment assistance loan was forgiven after 5 years residency.  The city, in order for them to reduce the interest rate that comes with the mortgage that’s paired with the down payment assistance, has made the down payment assistance loan repayable.  This down payment assistance loan of 3-3.5% of the purchase price is now repaid (with no interest) when you sell, move out, or refinance. The mortgage that comes with the assistance is a 30 year fixed mortgage with interest and regular monthly payments. The DC Housing Finance Agency sets interest rates for the mortgage program and publishes them here: https://www.facebook.com/DCOpenDoors

We’re only able to lock your interest rate by registering your loan with DC Open Doors on business days 11-5, after you apply and have a signed purchase contract.

You can also consider participating in the program, and forego the down payment assistance loan and therefore be offered a lower interest rate (as shown in the link above). Should you wish to forego the down payment assistance, on a conventional loan the minimum down payment is 3%, and on an FHA it is 3.5%.  I can help you determine whether the FHA, or the conventional, loan is the right program for you!  On the conventional loan, there is a lower interest rate if your income is under 80% of area median income which in DC is currently $120,320.

New in June 2023: Currently the program is not pricing interest rates with down payment assistance with FHA financing.  I expect this to change but I am unsure when.  


Typically the first step is setting up an initial phone call to review available loan programs and your basic finances.  The goal is to establish the best financing structure for your purchase and determine an appropriate price range for your search.  You’re welcome to set an appointment with me by clicking this link: Calendly


Pre-Qualify Now: https://ajaffe.firsthome.com/startapp

ajaffe@firsthome.com 240 – 479 – 7658


For the conventional DC open doors loan, there is a first time buyer class requirement.  You may complete it here:


When it asks, your home buyer education code is ajaffe@gofirsthome.com


The city also offers the DC4Me program which is a part of the DC open doors program, and is for DC government employees, and reduces the interest rate of the DC open doors loan.  DC4Me qualifies based on the income of all people who’ll occupy the property and the income cap on it is also $199,200.

Pictured: Me ten years older with my key to the city (for financing the first DC open doors loan) and the Legends award I just received at the 10 year anniversary party at the MLK Library rooftop (June 2023) for financing the most loans out of the thousands of loan officers at over 65 participating lenders. I love what I do and am proud of my career & expertise, but it’s this work of which I am most proud: helping first time buyers in DC buy with down payment assistance. I’ve financed 15% of all DC Open Doors loans, my branch 45%!