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Buy in Nye: 8 loans closed, more pending as housing initiative nears end

It’s been nine months since the launch of Buy in Nye and as of the first week of September, eight families had been able to purchase their very own home through the program.

Geared toward first-time homebuyers, the Buy in Nye program aims to provide prospective homeowners with down-payment assistance as well as the securing of lower payments through buying down the interest rate on their mortgage. Nevada Rural Housing Authority Homeownership Programs Director Diane Arvizo has been spearheading the initiative, which is funded through American Rescue Plan Act dollars awarded by Nye County. She was before the Nye County Commission this month with another update on how the program is progressing.

“I’m super pleased to be able to share some wonderful progress made over this last quarter,” Arvizo enthused during the commission’s Sept. 6 meeting. “To date, we’ve had 17 loan reservations in the program!”

Out of the 17 loan reservations, five were canceled. However, Arvizo explained that two of that cancellations were due to issues with escrow and those applicants were able to reapply to reserve a loan.

As of the Sept. 6 meeting, eight families had closed on their new home, with Arvizo noting,

Some were expected to move in over Labor Day weekend.

Four families were in escrow at that moment, one of which was a family in the Tonopah community whose escrow process was expected to close that afternoon.

Three of the eight families benefited from the Mortgage Credit Certificate program, too. Also administered by the Nevada Rural Housing Authority, the Mortgage Credit Certificate program allows homebuyers to receive a tax credit of up to 20% of their mortgage interest, meaning more money staying in the pockets of those buyers.

“The families who have been using the Buy in Nye program to get into a home received an average interest rate of 5.9%,” Arvizo detailed. “The primary borrower for households using the program to buy a home have an average credit score of 719. Average household income for all participants in the program is $59,671. The average household size for all participants in the program to date is 3.8 with one of the applicants being an unmarried women with three minor children and another borrower being a single individual, buying a home by himself.”

Quick to give credit to the lenders participating in the program, Arvizo highlighted LeaderOne Financial, PrimeLending, RMS &Associates, Prosperity Home Mortgage, Axia Financial, Castle &Cooke Mortgage, Evergreen Moneysource Mortgage Company, Guild Mortgage Company and loanDepot.com. “That’s a really nice spread of loan activity which I think demonstrates very well how the reach of the program is going across areas,” Arvizo remarked.

She noted that the original plan was to assist 25 families in total but that number has been reduced due to the need to increase the down-payment assistance option amounts, as well as the rising expense associated with buying down interest rates. In the first months of the program, the down payment assistance was set at $5,000 or $16,000. However, in August the agency decided to bump these amounts of $15,000 and $30,000 which resulted in several applicants being able to qualify where they did not before.

“A borrower who is receiving $15,000 in down-payment assistance would come with a 5.5% interest rate on their first mortgage, thanks to the Buy in Nye program that you supported,” Arvizo told commissioners. “For a borrower getting $30,000 in down-payment assistance, their interest rate on their first mortgage would be 6.75%. Not bad at all considering the market rate has tipped well over 7%.”

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