Tucson IDA, Pima IDA Announce Groundbreaking Lighthouse 3.0 Program for First-Time Homebuyers

In a joint effort to address the housing affordability crisis, Tucson IDA and Pima IDA have announced the launch of Lighthouse 3.0, the third round of a groundbreaking housing program designed to support first-time homebuyers in the region. 

With a commitment of an additional $25 million, the program now boasts a total investment of $75 million toward making homeownership a reality for families in Pima County, supported by the Pima Board of Supervisors, and the City of Tucson Mayor and Council’s approval to issue the necessary bonds.

Lighthouse 3.0 stands out by offering a locked-in 30-year mortgage rate of 6.00%, significantly below the national average. This initiative is coupled with 4% of the home’s sale price in down payment assistance, which becomes fully forgivable after five years of residency, equating to an average of $14,000 – $20,000 in financial support per household. The program is inclusive, extending its benefits to veterans and working families in various lower-income zip codes, with income eligibility limits extending from $91,600 for a single person up to $126,351 for a family of four, and qualifying manufactured homes.

Dre Thompson, CEO of Tucson IDA, emphasizes the program’s impact: “Lighthouse is just one of several innovative programs our collaboration has developed to rapidly respond to the housing crisis in Pima County, but it is by far the largest. We are set to deploy $150,000,000 for the hardworking families in our community through Lighthouse.”

Anticipation for the 2024 round of this program is high among lenders, with previous rounds of funding fully reserved within 35-40 days, highlighting the pressing need for affordable housing solutions. Diane Quihuis, president of Pima IDA, adds, “This latest round of funding for the Lighthouse bond program assists even more Pima County homebuyers to buy their chosen homes and build intergenerational wealth. As always, the Pima IDA Board of Directors is proud to work with its partners to further affordable housing in Pima County with this phenomenal below market rate. We expect this newest Lighthouse program to be reserved rapidly.”

The Tucson and Pima IDAs have a long history of developing innovative housing programs, such as Pima Tucson Homebuyers Solutions, PTHS ADVANTAGE, Single Family Mortgage Credit Certificates, and the Essential Workers Housing Fund, providing over $1 billion in mortgage loan originations and over $10 million in down payment assistance to more than 7,000 families since 2013. Thus far, Lighthouse alone has served over 190 families, half of them Hispanic households, thanks in part to a bilingual outreach strategy.

Lighthouse 3.0 is expected to continue this legacy of community empowerment. Interested homebuyers can connect with certified lenders and find more details available at pimatucsonlighthouse.com.

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