American teachers are paid poorly for what they do. Buying a home on a teacher's salary is not always possible. The Federal Housing Authority (FHA) offers down-payment assistance to teachers who are buying their first houses.
Down Payment Assistance Programs (DAPS) help first-time home buyers with their down payments and closing costs. Some of these programs include Nehemiah, which offers grants of up to 3 percent towards the down payment and HART, which grants up to $15,000 for the down payment and closing costs. Additionally, the Neighborhood Gold program, that awards from 3 percent to 10 percent of the down payment and closing costs and includes Mortgage Payment Protection of up to $1,500 for up to 12 months if the owner becomes unemployed.
The Teacher Next Door Program
The FHA offers the Teacher Next Door Program, in which teachers may qualify for a 50 percent discount off appraised value and may only have to make a $100 down payment. However, eligible properties are typically located in "low- and moderate-income neighborhoods, have many vacant properties and often have high crime rates," according to the FHA.
Only full-time public and private school teachers or state-certified teachers and administrators of primary and secondary schoools (kindergarten through 12th grade) qualify for this type of assistance. To qualify for down payment assistance through the FHA, teachers must occupy the home as their only residence for at least three years.