Dear Dr. Don,
I'm about to graduate from college with plans to move to Tampa, Florida, from Amarillo, Texas. I'm on Social Security Disability Insurance because of a genetic heart condition. One of my goals is to become a homeowner.
Hoping to be a first-time homebuyer on disability, I'll need some help but have no idea who to contact. I'm 25 years old and single with no children and few relatives.
While I'm a hard worker, I understand things can't always be fair. I am also a grateful individual who endures life's lessons. Still, I'm determined to make my goals and dreams a reality. I'd appreciate any advice you can provide to help me achieve my dream of homeownership.
-- Amanda Abode
Congratulations on your upcoming graduation.
The good news is that there's plenty of help available. Since you're moving to Florida, I'd suggest working with the local housing authority in the Tampa area. While it's true that federal programs are available nationwide, real estate is local. You'll need to learn about real estate in the Tampa market.
Steve McLinden, one of Bankrate's real estate experts, identifies several programs for disabled homeowners.
- The Department of Housing and Urban Development's Homeownership Voucher Program.
- Social Security's Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, program.
- Fannie Mae's Community HomeChoice program.
- Habitat for Humanity.
- State and local housing agencies.
Since you've been successful in college, a little homework is something you can obviously handle well.
Again, congratulations and good luck!