FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – Rent increases and this week’s interest rate hike continue posing challenges for tenants and homebuyers.

The City of Fresno wants to help homebuyers by raising awareness about a down payment assistance program through Bank of America. 
According to Mayor Jerry Dyer, between early 2021 and 2022, rents in the City of Fresno increased by 28 percent.
“I can’t think of a better rent control than for people to own a home and have a fixed rate of a 30-year mortgage on a house,” Dyer said. “Through two grant programs, our residents will be able to qualify for up to $17,500 to help with not only the down payment but any other closing costs associated with the purchase of the house. And the best news is, these grants are gifts, they don’t have to be paid back.”
The resource is part of a nationwide initiative from Bank of America available in 800 cities, including Fresno.
“There’s approximately 250 properties currently on the market in Fresno that would qualify for this program,” said Mark Riley, Fresno/Visalia Bank of America President.”Nationally, 60% of households are homeowner households, where in Fresno, only 40% are homeowner households,” said Deputy Mayor Matthew Grundy.
Mayor Dyer said the initiative aligns with his “One Fresno” housing strategy.
“In my Fiscal Budget ’23 Mayor’s Budget, I proposed $40 million to go towards housing. That’s on top of probably $20 million that the city will get from the state and federal government,” Dyer said.
Dyer’s housing proposal is still in the works during city budget negotiations in the coming weeks but says it could be ready to launch in August.
The Bank of America down payment grants are not limited to first-time homebuyers.
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