Helping First-Time Home Buyers in Oregon

By HOM Editor

The legislators in Salem are currently considering the Oregon First-Time Homebuyers Savings Program, a new idea to help prospective home buyers start saving for their first home.

Oregon is facing an affordable housing crisis. The housing market is suffering because homes are so expensive and it takes too long for young people and renters to save enough money for a down payment on a home. High rents, student loan payments and wages that don’t keep up with the cost of living are tough obstacles to overcome.

The Oregon First-Time Homebuyers Savings Program addresses these problems.

According to a statewide poll conducted for the Oregon Association of REALTORS®:

  • 79 percent of Oregonians support the Oregon First-Time Homebuyers Savings Program.
  • 86 percent of Oregonians view saving enough for a down payment and closing costs as a significant obstacle to buying a home.
  • 89 percent of Oregonians believe that buying a home is a good financial decision.

The Oregon First-Time Homebuyers Savings Program would allow individuals to take a state tax deduction for saving money towards a down payment on their first home.

The savings would be stored in a special bank account, like a college savings plan. Deposits into the account would be tax deductible, up to a limit, and the interest gained on the account would be tax free. Here’s how the plan works:

  • The funds in the account would have to be used for a down payment or other closing costs associated with purchase or construction of a home.
  • The account can be opened at any Oregon bank or credit union.
  • The savings account would be available to people who have never owned a home or those who have not owned a home in the last three years.
  • Families could save up to $50,000 including deposits and interest earned on the account over a span of 10 years.

Visit the Oregon First Home Coalition website to learn more.


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