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Homeownership Equity Project

Homeownership Advisor Available for Households of Color

Call (619) 578-7788


Households of color that want to learn more about available assistance for down payments or closing costs, as well as referrals to programs to prepare for homeownership, such as credit counseling or debt reduction, should contact the San Diego Housing Commission’s (SDHC) Homeownership Advisor.

The Homeownership Advisor is available to answer questions, assess financial preparedness and, as needed, connect callers with organizations that provide the types of services they need to become ready to buy a home. They can assist households interested in SDHC’s pilot program for middle-income first-time homebuyers of color as well as those interested in SDHC’s first-time homebuyer programs for low-income families.

Pilot Program for Homebuyers of Color

A San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) pilot program launched in June 2023 to help middle-income first-time homebuyers of color achieve the dream of homeownership in San Diego.

Types of Assistance Available

  • Loan + Grant
    $20,000 Down Payment Assistance Loan
    (15-year loan with deferred payments for first
    7 years, 1.5% simple interest)+

    $20,000 Closing Cost Assistance Grant
    $40,000 Total Assistance


  • Grant Only
    $20,000 Total Assistance for Down Payment and Closing Costs


  • Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) households
  • Households that have not owned a home in the past three years
  • Maximum Sales Price: $1,250,000
  • Household income of 80% to 150% of San Diego’s Area Median Income (Income dollar amounts vary based on family size. See table below.)
Household Size Minimum Income 80% AMI Maximum Income 150% AMI
1 $77,200 $122,650
2 $88,200 $140,150
3 $99,250 $157,700
4 $110,250 $175,200
5 $119,100 $189,200
6 $127,900 $203,250
7 $136,750 $217,250
8 $145,550 $231,250

*Additional terms and conditions apply. Click here for additional details.

How to Apply

To get started, contact a lender/loan officer who participates in SDHC first-time homebuyer assistance programs. Click here for a complete list. The loan officer will be the primary point of contact from pre-approval to loan closing. The loan officer collects all required documentation and submits the application on the borrower’s behalf to SDHC.

Creating Homebuying Opportunities for People of Color

The San Diego Homeownership Equity Project, announced in fall 2022, brings together 14 community organizations, the San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) and the San Diego City-County Reinvestment Task Force to expand homeownership opportunities for the region’s people of color. Homeownership rates for Black and Latino households are significantly lower than those for White households in the City of San Diego. This racial and ethnic homeownership gap has significant impacts on household wealth, savings and financial stability. Supported by a $7.5 million grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation through 2025, the San Diego Homeownership Equity Project will implement strategies to increase homeownership preparation services and financial assistance products for homebuyers of color.

For consumers looking to access homebuyer help right now, the following organizations provide homeownership preparation services and assistance. This list will continue to be expanded and updated with additional services.

Homebuyer Resources

San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) – Down payment assistance programs
– First-time homebuyer classes and orientations
Logan Heights Community Development Corporation (LHCDC) – Credit counseling, debt reduction and credit score improvement programs
– First-time homebuyer classes and orientations
MAAC – Credit counseling, debt reduction and credit score improvement programs
Urban League – Credit counseling, debt reduction and credit score improvement programs
– First-time homebuyer classes and orientations
– Down payment assistance programs

San Diego Homeownership Equity Collaborative Members


The Challenge: Racial Homeownership Gap

According to an Urban Institute study that SDHC commissioned, homeownership rates among Black (29.1 percent) and Latino households (35.2 percent) are significantly lower than White (54.8 percent) and Asian (54.5 percent) households in the City of San Diego. Latino households represented 19.1 percent of all households in San Diego, but only 13.6 percent of all homeowner households. Black households accounted for 6.1 percent of all San Diego households, but only 3.6 percent of all homeowner households in the City of San Diego.

Nationwide, the Urban Institute estimates that without action, over the next 20 years, Black homeownership will continue to decline, and Hispanic homeownership will experience only slight increases. Gaps in homeownership rates contribute to differences in wealth among households. According to a Federal Reserve bulletin based on the Survey of Consumer Finances, the median net worth for a White family, which is $188,200, was approximately five times higher than for a Hispanic family, which is $36,100, and nearly eight times higher than for a Black family, which is $24,100. According to Urban Institute, home equity represents approximately 60% of total net worth for Black homeowners, compared with 43% for White homeowners. Homeownership provides households an asset that grows in value, can help pay educational expenses, may be used to help family members buy their own homes, or provides an inheritance for the next generation.

Wells Fargo Foundation’s WORTH Grant

Wells Fargo’s Wealth Opportunities Restored through Homeownership (WORTH) initiative is a $60 million national effort to address systemic barriers to homeownership for people of color. San Diego is one of eight markets across the U.S. to receive a WORTH grant. SDHC and RTF are among the organizations in the San Diego Homeownership Equity Collaborative, which will work to help create 5,000 new homeowners of color in San Diego County by the end of 2025.

Wells Fargo is working to increase racial equity in homeownership. Nationally, WORTH aims to help create 40,000 new homeowners of color by the end of 2025. Wells Fargo’s $40 million Growing Diverse Housing Developers program is also working to expand housing inventory in communities of color, among other initiatives. The company also recently launched a Special Purpose Credit Program to help eligible minority homeowners whose mortgages are serviced by Wells Fargo lower their interest rates and reduce their monthly mortgage payments.

National Fair Housing Alliance Grant

The National Fair Housing Alliance awarded a $184,000 grant to an SDHC nonprofit affiliate to provide additional financial support for expanded efforts to help more people of color become homeowners in the City of San Diego. Announced in January 2023, the grant provides funds for programs that help households of color prepare for homeownership and/or purchase a home. These activities include debt reduction, credit counseling, peer mentors, homeownership navigators and community educators, as well as down payment or closing cost assistance grants and credit-building loans.


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