Education & Support for Homebuyers

Steps to apply for San Francisco Mayor's Office of Housing and Community Development (MOHCD)  Programs

MOHCD currently has 3 homebuyer programs: Below market rate (BMR), Downpayment Assistance Loan Program (DALP), and City Second Loan Program (CSLP).

1. Complete homebuyer education through a Homeownership SF Counseling Agency

Homebuyer education consists of 6 hours of workshop education and 2 hours of individual counseling. Make sure to contact your housing counseling agency to book an appointment for individual counseling after attending the group workshops.

See First Time Homebuyer Workshop Calendar

---Homebuyer education is also required for downpayment assitance programs through MOHCD---

When you have met all of your homebuyer education requirement, your housing counselor will issue a Verification of Homebuyer Education form. Your official Certificate Of Homebuyer Education will be issued upon entering into a valid purchase contract and submitting the form Request for Homebuyer Certificate to your counseling agency.The certificate is valid for one year. Homebuyers are not required to attend workshops again u ntil two years have elapsed.

2. Find a home you can afford!

See affordable home listing

3. Get pre-approved for a mortgage

Work with a MOHCD-approved lender and obtain a mortgage loan pre-approval letter.

4. Submit a complete application

Applications must be submitted by the deadline and include required documentation such as 3 months of your most recent bank statements, 3 years of your most recent tax returns, 3 most recent paystubs and mortgage loan pre approval letter. Need assistance with your application?

See Application Clinic Calendar

5. Win the lottery!

Once your application is submitted, you will receive a lottery ticket number and automatically enter the lottery for the home you are applying for. See details about how the lottery works. Lottery results will be posted in the MOHCD listing of the home.

Didn't win the lottrery? Play again!


Congrats! You won the BMR lottery! Now what?

  1. Applications will be reviewed according to lottery ranking order. Regardless of where you rank in the lottery, you will likely NOT be contacted until the Mayor’s Office of Community Development (MOHCD) is ready to begin processing your application. This can take a few weeks, or more. When they begin processing your application, MOHCD and/or your housing counselor may contact you for additional or updated documents, if needed.
  2. Once your BMR application is approved, you will enter into a "contract to purchase" and work with your lender on loan approval. The Certificate of Homebuyer Education is a loan requirement. To obtain your Certificate, contact your housing counselor. You may also do a pre-closing interview with your counselor.
  3. Your mortgage loan officer will send the lender package to MOHCD for final approval to close escrow. For BMR units, escrow is about 60 days. Please see the Purchase Process and Finalizing Your Purchase for further details and recommendations about this process.