August 2020
AHFA Board of Directors to Meet in September
The AHFA Board of Directors will meet Tuesday, September 22 at 11 a.m. in the AHFA offices.
AHFA Increases DPA for Step Up FHA Loans
AHFA has increased the amount of down payment assistance provided on Step Up FHA loans from 3% to 3.5%. This increase will cover 100% of the down payment needed on FHA loans.

In these uncertain times, we know that homebuyers want to hold on to as much of their money as possible. Based on the average purchase price of existing homes we helped finance last fiscal year, a 3% down payment would translate to $4,200. By increasing our assistance to 3.5%, we can now provide $4,900. That extra $700 could be used towards a new appliance, lawnmower, home improvement project, or just to pad a homebuyer's savings account more. 

Visit if you have any questions about this increase in assistance or the Step Up program in general.
Comments Accepted on 2021 Allocation Plans
Following a July 21 public hearing, AHFA accepted public comments through August 20 on:

  • The proposed Substantial Amendment to the HUD Approved 2020 HOME Action Plan for the distribution of HOME funds in exchange for new construction of low-income projects and for the monitoring of HOME projects

  • The proposed 2021 HOME Action Plan, the Housing Credit Qualified Allocation Plan, and the National Housing Trust Fund Allocation Plan for the distribution of HOME funds, Housing Credits, and National Housing Trust Funds in exchange for the new construction and substantial rehabilitation of low-income projects and for the monitoring of HOME, Housing Credits, and National Housing Trust funds for all projects

AHFA received 91 written comments regarding the draft HOME Action Plan and the Housing Credit Qualified Allocation Plan from 28 individuals/organizations. The proposed plans and comments are available at
@ Home with AHFA Customer Success Stories: Wilson/Sanders Episode
This customer Success Story is a little different than the rest. It is the first one we have produced since the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our own Tony Lee talked with Tyler Wilson at LoanDepot in Huntsville about how the pandemic is affecting the homebuying process and about helping Holly and Brandon Sanders purchase a home during this time with the help of the Step Up down payment assistance program.

Holly and Brandon are also quoted about how the Step Up program helped them and what they’re enjoying about their new home. 
Realtor Spotlight: Carla Burton, Keller Williams, Gardendale
After she became an empty nester, Carla Burton decided to capitalize on her love of looking at houses and helping others by becoming a real estate agent. She began her journey in April 2017 with Keller Williams, where she remains today.

Q: What are some of the biggest changes you have seen in real estate during your career?
A: The biggest change I have seen so far are all of the rapid changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, including changes to qualifications, falling interest rates, and higher credit scores required.

Q: What is the best advice you can give to first-time homebuyers?
A: In the beginning, a lot of clients are not forthcoming with information, especially around funds for down payment. I encourage buyers to be open and transparent with your lender and Realtor. This allows both of us to best assist you with one of the biggest achievements of your life.

Q: How did you hear about AHFA programs?
A: Through lender Sally Knox at LoanDepot. I’ve been promoting and recommending the Step Up program ever since.

Q: Why do you recommend the Step Up program to buyers?
A: The program is simple and allows buyers to purchase a home with little to no funds needed for down payment. When I hear potential homebuyers say, “I can’t buy a house with no down payment,” my words are, “You can, and let me tell you how.” I would like to thank AHFA for providing a program that turns the “can’t” into “can” for a lot of buyers.

Q: What do you find most rewarding about your job?
A: The smile on my client’s face at the closing table is so rewarding to me. The ability to help homebuyers that thought they could never purchase a home is a remarkable feeling.
"Lenders Share AHFA Stories" Video Contest Begins September 1
We could all use some feel-good stories right now. So, we’re asking our participating lenders to share some!

We’re hosting a “Lenders Share AHFA Stories” Video Contest to recognize our participating lenders and celebrate stories about people using our programs. Over the years, we’ve heard from so many lenders with stories about how AHFA programs have helped make it possible for Alabamians to buy a home.

Lenders are asked to submit a video and tell us your best story…whether it’s heartwarming, funny, inspirational, etc.

Facebook users will vote on their favorite video, and the winner will receive an awesome gift basket with a prize to make their videos even better in the future. The gift basket will include a Vitade 960A Combination Webcam/Ring Light/Microphone as well as a YETI Rambler Stainless Steel Mug and other goodies.

Record a video (no longer than :60) and tell us about your favorite AHFA homebuyer story. Upload it to our Facebook page and use the hashtag #AHFALenderStories. It’s that simple to enter.

Entries will be accepted from September 1 until September 15 at 11:59 p.m. CST. Voting will begin on September 16 at 12:00 a.m. CST and run through September 23 at 11:59 p.m. CST. Facebook users can vote for their favorite video by liking one in the gallery. During this time, entrants should let family and friends know to vote for their video!

Refer to the Contest page on our website for more information or contact us at with any questions. Good luck!
Community Heroes Program Expands to Help More Alabamians
The Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta recently expanded the target audiences of its Community Heroes program to help even more Alabamians purchase a home. Now, healthcare workers and essential workers (as defined by the Alabama Department of Public Health in the Order of the State Health Officer) can receive assistance from the Community Heroes program. Previously, eligible recipients included only law enforcement officers, public school educators, firefighters, and other first responders.

AHFA teamed with the Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta to bring the Community Heroes program to Alabama. It provides grant funds to help Alabamians purchase a home. Funds are delivered exclusively through FHLB Atlanta member banks. FHLB Atlanta and AHFA are offering the opportunity to access $1 million in grants to eligible homebuyers earning greater than 80 percent and up to 120 percent of area median income. To learn more about how you can be a lender and generate business in this exciting initiative, email
Three New Step Up Lenders Welcomed in August
AHFA Offices to Close for September Holiday
The AHFA, ServiSolutions, and Hardest Hit Alabama offices will be closed on Monday, September 7 in observance of the Labor Day holiday. We will reopen at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, September 8.
Alabama Housing Finance Authority | Montgomery, Alabama | 334.244.9200 | Email | Website