The Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA) has been approved for set aside funding in the amount of $6 million from Virginia Housing through the Sponsoring Partnerships and Revitalizing Communities (SPARC) loan program to assist first-time homebuyers in purchasing a home by lowering their interest rate by one percent. These funds should be able to assist approximately 16 families buying homes in Fairfax County.
SPARC funds are a state-wide allocation of tax-exempt mortgage revenue bond monies that provide first-trust financing at an interest rate that is one percent below the Virginia Housing rate. The funds are not received by the County or FCRHA; nor is there a County match. The funds are made available to qualified lenders directly from Virginia Housing upon approval of the loan documents by Fairfax County Department of Housing and Community Development staff.
Including this most recent set aside, the FCRHA has sponsored $14 million in SPARC funding in 2020. As of August 2020, all but $85,000 of the original set aside funding, reserved in February, was expended and 24 households with 59 family members were able to buy homes in Fairfax County. The average home sales price was $345,000 and some interest rates were below 2.0 percent.
Under SPARC, homebuyers must meet Virginia Housing’s eligibility and underwriting requirements for its first-time homebuyer program. Loans are originated through Virginia Housing and their lending partners with the FCRHA serving as the Sponsor that approves the lender’s reservation for SPARC funding.