GSFA OpenDoors® — Overview

Program Overview

GSFA OpenDoors® Program

Update, March 20, 2023
GSFA OpenDoors Program on hold until further notice. No new locks under GSFA OpenDoors will be taken by Gateway Mortgage Group, the Master Servicer, until further notice.
Down Payment Assistance — NOT Limited to First-time Homebuyers

The GSFA OpenDoors Program helps low-to-moderate income homebuyers in California purchase a home by providing down payment and/or closing cost assistance (DPA).

Program Highlights(1)

  • Financial assistance up to 6% of the First Mortgage Loan amount
  • Assistance can be used towards down payment and/or closing costs
  • Part of the assistance is a Gift, while the other portion is in the form of a deferred Second Mortgage which accrues zero interest
  • Homebuyer does not have to be a first-time homebuyer to qualify
  • FICO score as low as 620 and DTIs up to 55% can qualify
  • 1-4 unit residences, condos and townhomes allowed
  • Flexible income limits (low-to-moderate income)
  • Various First Mortgage Loan types available to fit the needs of the homebuyer (FHA, VA, USDA and Conventional financing)

How to Apply if You are a Homebuyer

We are here to answer questions about the Program and provide a general understanding of how it may help you purchase a home in California. However, when you are ready to discuss your personal financial situation and/or get started, you will need to work with one of our Participating Lenders.

GSFA is not a direct lender and relies on a vast network of Participating Lenders to process loan applications for the GSFA homebuyer assistance programs, furnish current interest rates and APRs.

Lender Participation Guide

The Participation Guide furnishes Lenders (and real estate professionals) with complete program guidelines and an understanding of the steps to be taken to process loan applications for the GSFA OpenDoors® Program. Information in the Participation Guide is intended for mortgage professionals only.

GSFA OpenDoors Program

Down Payment Assistance — Description and Terms

Does down payment assistance seem too good to be true? Are you wondering if the assistance made available through the GSFA OpenDoors Program has to be repaid, and if so, when? These are great questions and we are here with answers.

Browse the information below for more information. Then when you are ready to get started, or if you have questions about your specific financial circumstances, talk with a Participating Lender. Our Lenders will help you determine which GSFA down payment assistance program and/or option will best fit your needs.

Does the DPA Have to be Paid Back?

The down payment and closing cost assistance provided through the GSFA OpenDoors Program is a combination of a Gift and a deferred Second Mortgage.

The Gift portion of the down payment assistance does not have to be repaid. The portion of the down payment assistance that is provided as a deferred Second Mortgage has a 30-year term with a zero percent note rate. It does not accrue any interest and has no monthly payment requirements. It is due and payable upon sale, refinance or payoff of the First Mortgage.

Our Participating Lenders can help you determine what type of First Mortgage Loan is best for your needs and circumstances, as well as how much in assistance you need. They can answer detailed questions about all of the program guidelines, and walk you through the process from loan application to closing.

No First-time Homebuyer Requirement to Qualify

One of the most unique features of GSFA down payment assistance programs, is that there is no requirement that an applicant be a first-time homebuyer to qualify.

So, whether you are buying your first home, or returning to homeownership, or maybe even own a home today, but are purchasing a home that you will be occupying as your primary residence, you can apply for the GSFA OpenDoors down payment assistance program.

(1) Certain restrictions apply on all programs. See a Participating Lender for complete program guidelines, current interest rates, loan applications, applicable fees and annual percentage rates (APRs).

Questions or Ready to Get Started?

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Click the question below to reveal the answer.

The DPA through the GSFA OpenDoors Program is provided as a combination of a Gift and a Second Mortgage with a deferred repayment. The Second Mortgage portion has a 30-year term and a zero percent note rate. It does not accrue any interest and has no monthly payment requirements. It is due and payable upon sale, refinance or payoff of the First Mortgage. The portion of assistance provided as a Gift does not have to be repaid.

Contact Us or a GSFA Participating Lender for more info.

The GSFA OpenDoors Program can be used to purchase a residential property in the state of California, as long as the homebuyer intends to occupy the property as their primary residence.

Newly constructed or existing homes are eligible. One to four unit residences, including condominums and townhomes are allowed, depending on the type of First Mortgage.

Contact Us or a GSFA Participating Lender for more info.

No. With the GSFA OpenDoors Program, the homebuyer is not required to remain in the home for any period of time after purchase and initial residency. However, the DPA Second Mortgage is due and payable upon sale of the property or refinance of the First Mortgage.

There may be income limits depending on the type of First Mortgage for which the homebuyer qualifies. For example, GSFA publishes specific income limits for Conventional Loans, based on the county where the property is located. Click here to view the Income Limits.

No. To qualify for the Program, the home being purchased must become the primary residence of the homebuyer. Vacation, second homes and rentals are not eligible.

Homebuyers interested in the GSFA OpenDoors Program must work with a GSFA Participating Lender. The Lender will furnish the homebuyer with complete program guidelines, current interest rates, applicable APRs and fees and assist with the application and qualification process.

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