Down Payment Assistance

Down Payment Assistance Program (DAP)

The Community Services Department’s Down Payment Assistance Program (DAP) can provide financial assistance to help you purchase your dream home in Harris County.


Applicant Eligibility Criteria

  • First-time homebuyer that has not owned a home for three years prior to applying for assistance
  • Buyer is income-qualified (see chart below)
  • Buyer must have at least one credit score of 580
  • Buyer must be credit approved through one of the participating mortgage lenders (see Approved Lenders button below)
  • Buyer front-end ratio (debt) cannot exceed 39% and the back-end ratio or debt-to-income ratio (DTI) cannot exceed 42%
  • Buyer is required to successfully complete an 8-hour homeownership education course before applying for DAP assistance.  The course must be:
    • provided by a HUD-approved homebuyer education course provider (see button below)
    • performed by a Certified Counselor
    • buyer is required to submit a final signed household budget from their HUD-approved provider
  • Buyer must contribute a minimum of $1,000 towards the purchase of the home
  • Buyer cannot have more than $15,000 in liquid assets, such as stocks, cash, or bonds
  • Borrower(s) and/or Non-Participating Spouse are required to be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident Alien

Steps for Homeownership

Homebuyer Advantage Resource Guide

Harris County DAP Frequently Asked Questions

2021 DAP Guidelines and Procedural Manual

Income Chart

Source:  U.S. Department of HUD, effective June 15, 2023 (Conforms to HOME Rents)

*Income is determined by projecting the current income of household members over
a 12-month period.  (Subject to change)

Program Eligibility Criteria

  • Home must be in the unincorporated areas of Harris County, which include these zip codes and service area
  • Homes cannot be located in the City of Houston, Baytown, or Pasadena, as these cities have their own programs
  • The maximum purchase price for a:
    • Pre-existing home is $261,000
    • Newly constructed home is $268,000
  • The amount of DAP assistance available for new and pre-existing homes is up to $23,800.  This includes:
    • Down Payment
    • Customary Closing Costs
    • Owners Title Policy
    • a 3-Year Home Warranty up to a maximum of $500 per year, on pre-existing homes
    • a 1-year Flood Insurance Policy up to a maximum of $500
  • Buyer is required to maintain home as primary residence for:
    • 5 years – if DAP award is $1 – $14,999 or
    • 10 years – if DAP award is $15,000 – $23,800

*Effective April 1, 2021, pre-existing homes built prior to 1978 are eligible.

Your Path To Home Ownership $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$gnma_Logo
How much can you afford to spend on a home? Providing the information below will allow you to calculate how much you can afford to spend on a home.  However, many additional factors play a part in the loan qualification process.

To calculate how much you can afford to pay for a house, click here.


cityseal300x100For the City of Houston’s Homebuyer Assistance Program (HAP), please click here.

For the City of Houston’s Workforce Housing Downpayment Assistance Program (WHDAP), please click here.



Harris County Housing Authority provides qualified Housing Choice Voucher families with the opportunity to own a home of their own.  To learn more, visit:  Harris County Housing Authority’s Independence Downpayment Assistance Program:

Texas Veteran Land Board
1-(800) 252-VETS
Ask about purchasing land and other VA programs.

For a county map that covers the area served by Harris County’s DAP program, click here.

Email your comments and questions to the Harris County staff.

Equal Housing Lender
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