Down Payment Assistance Program

Chicago Housing Authority Launches New Down Payment Assistance (DPA) Program to Help Families Achieve  Their Dreams of Homeownership

Samantha Stokes is the first recipient of CHA's new Down Payment Assistance program. This program offers a grant for prospective homebuyers.

In partnership with Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago, the Down Payment Assistance (DPA) program provides a grant of up to $20,000 towards the purchase of a home.

You can either be currently participating in a CHA program or simply be an IL resident (living in or moving to Chicago) that meets the income limits. Following are a few details about the program. CHA down payment assistance funds may be used for a down payment, to lower your interest rate or to cover closing costs. CHA funds may be layered with other sources of down payment assistance. (Cash back at close is not allowed.)

Following are a few details about the program. For more information email

Program Requirements for First-Time Homebuyers in Chicago

  • You must be a first-time homebuyer, meaning you haven't owned a home in the last three years.
  • The home you want to purchase must be within the City of Chicago.
  • You need to live in the home as your primary residence; it can't be used solely as an investment property.
  • The types of homes eligible for the program include single-family houses, townhomes, condominiums, and 2-4 unit buildings, including new construction.
  • If purchasing a 2–4-unit property, attend a Landlord Training that includes information on the Cook County Landlords Ordinance.
  • This is a federally funded program open only to U.S. citizens.
  • Homebuyer must sign an owner-occupancy agreement.


CHA Purchase Assistance Grants are available to CHA participants at any income level. If the applicant is not currently participating in a CHA program, they may still apply for purchase assistance. Non-CHA households earning up to 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI) for the Chicago Metropolitan Area as determined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development are eligible to apply for purchase assistance.

DPA Household Income Chart
  • The combined annual gross income for all household individuals 18 years and older should not exceed 80% of the current HUD Area Median Income (AMI) for Chicago according to household size, which is updated annually by HUD.
  • Residents receiving housing assistance from the CHA may also qualify for the program.

Homebuyer's Education Course

  • To participate, all individuals listed on the loan must complete an eight-hour Homebuyer Education (HBE) class from a HUD-approved provider.

Mortgage Pre-approval

  • To apply for the DPA grant, you must have a valid preapproval from one of our approved lenders.

Approved Lenders

  • Associated Bank
  • Bank of America
  • BMO
  • Chase Bank
  • CIBC
  • Citibank
  • Guaranteed Rate
  • Guaranteed Rate Affinity
  • Huntington Bank
  • Loan Depot
  • Marquette Bank
  • NACA
  • Neighborhood Lending Services
  • Old National
  • PNC Bank
  • Self-Help Federal Credit Union
  • US Bank
  • Wells Fargo Bank
  • Wintrust Mortgage

Purchase Agreement

  • You must provide proof that you have executed a purchase agreement for the home you intend to buy.

Savings Requirement

  • As part of the program, you are required to show proof of at least $3,000 in a checking or savings account at the time of application.  If you are currently receiving Social Security income benefits, the required amount is $2,000 in a checking or savings account at the time of application.
    • Proof of paid earnest money, appraisal, and/or home inspection can be a contribution to the asset requirement.

Terms and Conditions

CHA and/or Program Funders reserves the right to request additional information, and documentation; to conduct additional review of the applicant and property; and to approve or deny any application. CHA reserves the right to update and change program requirements without notice. Please note all applicants are required to have a Social Security number and be a U.S. Citizen.

DPA Orientation Sessions

 If you are interested in learning more about the DPA program or want to see if you qualify, please register for a virtual orientation session below. Attending a DPA orientation session is required to apply for the grant.

Upcoming Orientations

All virtual orientations are from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM.

When you successfully register, you will receive a confirmation email with meeting details. You will need to download Zoom before joining a Zoom meeting on a computer or mobile device. Otherwise, you will be prompted to download and install Zoom when you click a join link.