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Government Home Grants - Finding government home grants is easy, if you know where to look.

non-profits seeking funding: homeowners seeking a refurbishment grant: government home grants for taxpayers:

Government home grants to help buy a home, pay for home repairs, or make energy-efficient upgrades are available, but most don’t know where look. Most government grants are given to states and non-profit organizations who then award the grants at the local level, but some are given as tax credits.

Non-profits seeking funding:

If you are a non-profit organization looking for a government home grant to fund programs that provide grants to homebuyers to assist them with purchasing a home or offering grants to homeowners for home improvement, then the place to look is at Grants.gov. Grants.gov is a government website that lists all federally-funded grant opportunities. They make grants to organizations and to states, but it is very rare that these grants are given to individuals. On the Grants.gov website, search by category under “Housing” to see only home-related grant opportunities. Some of the larger government home grant programs that fund organizations helping home buyers and homeowners are: Choice Neighborhoods, Community Development Block Grant Program for Indian Tribes and Alaska Native Villages (ICDBG), Continuum of Care, Family Self-Sufficiency, Family Unification, HOPE VI Revitalization Grant Program (HOPE VI), Healthy Homes and Lead Hazard Control, Housing Choice Voucher, Housing Counseling Training Program, Resident Opportunity and Self-Sufficiency (ROSS), Service Coordinators and the Special Needs Assistance Program. To learn more about these programs visit the HUD website at: http://portal.hud.gov/portal/page/portal/ class="caps">HUD/topics/grants.

Individuals seeking a grant to purchase a home:

For individuals it is important to understand that government home grants are usually funded at the state level so the key to getting a share of the government grant money is to search your state’s website for home buying or home improvement grants. The most common government funded home grants are for first time home buyers and are used to help pay the down payment or closing costs on a home loan. Individuals must qualify for these grants by meeting an income requirement, choosing a home that is located within a specific area (usually this is by county) and by completing a home buyer education course. Some first time home buyer grant programs have additional requirements such as requiring that you to repay a pro-rated portion of the grant if you sell the house or move and rent it out to someone else. In most cases, the grant is usually fully-vested (meaning you don’t have to pay it back) after five years.

Homeowners seeking a refurbishment grant:

The most common government home grant for homeowners is a home refurbishment grant. These grants usually provide funds for homeowners to repair property and are administered through local non-profits in your state or county. These grants require the individual to meet income guidelines, they also require the homeowner to hire licensed contractors to complete all work and usually the homeowner must include the grant making organization in the bidding process. These grants are usually reserved for specific types of home repair such as lead paint removal, electrical upgrades where there is a fire hazard, or roof replacement in mold prone areas. Individual organizations that provide the grant set the guidelines for which type of home repairs will be accepted and for where the home must be located.

Government home grants for taxpayers:

Government home grants for taxpayers are given in the form of tax credits. Until 2011, select Armed Forces and state employees are eligible to receive up to $8,000 in government home grant money as a tax credit for buying a qualified home through the Federal Home Buyer Credit extension program.

Individuals who upgrade their home with energy efficient doors, windows, air conditioners, heaters, or appliances are eligible to receive a government home grant for up to 30% of the cost of the materials back from the government in the form of a tax credit for (up to $1500) until December 2010. For larger energy efficient property upgrades (e.g. geothermal heat pumps, solar panels, solar water heaters) the government home grant is made through a tax credit for up to 30% of the cost with no upper limit to the credit for specific upgrades. This credit runs through 2016, see http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=tax_credits.tx_index or more details.

References:
Federal Grants: http://www.grants.gov
/> HUD Grants:
http://portal.hud.gov/portal/page/portal/ class="caps">HUD/topics/grants
Energy Star:
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=tax_credits.tx_index
/> Internal Revenue Service: http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=204335,00.html?portlet=6

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