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Gov. DeSantis announces Hometown Heroes Program to help essential workers purchase first homes

Gov. Ron DeSantis announces new $100 million Florida Hometown Heroes Program at a press conference in Cape Coral, Monday.
Gov. Ron DeSantis announces new $100 million Florida Hometown Heroes Program at a press conference in Cape Coral, Monday.

Governor Ron DeSantis was in Cape Coral, Monday, lauding a new $100 million program called Hometown Heroes aimed at helping Floridians in essential jobs purchase a first home.

The Florida Hometown Heroes Program aims to help Floridians in more than 50 critical professions purchase a first home by providing assistance with down payment and closing costs. The Florida Housing Finance Corporation is administering the program and Gov. DeSantis says eligible would-be homeowners can begin applying through a loan officer starting next Wednesday, June 1.

“To make sure that the program is accessible to every eligible homebuyer in Florida, there are over 1,000 loan officers receiving training right now, as we speak, throughout the state,” said DeSantis.

“And the money will not be ready until July 1 when the fiscal year starts, but Floridians can begin applying through their lenders on June 1.”

The program will allow borrowers to receive up to 5% of their first mortgage loan amount in down payment and closing costs, up to a maximum of $25,000.

Eligible workers include law enforcement officers, firefighters, 911 operators, teachers, daycare workers and all manner of healthcare workers.

Also eligible are military veterans, active duty service members moving to Florida and surviving spouses of deceased veterans, regardless of whether or not they’re buying a first home.

During Monday’s press conference in Cape Coral, DeSantis also signaled his plans to support the $363 million Florida lawmakers allocated for affordable and workforce housing in the state’s coming fiscal year budget.

The Governor’s announcement comes as state lawmakers began a special legislative session to address Florida’s property insurance crisis. Some insurers are pulling out of Florida altogether, leaving tens of thousands of cancelled home insurance policies. Others have gone out of business.

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