RIHousing’s new Down Payment Assistance Program – the First Down Program – is designed to help strengthen housing demand and increase homeownership opportunities for first-time homebuyers. The down payment assistance is structured as a forgivable loan secured by a second mortgage. Buyers who remain in homes purchased with the assistance for at least 5 years are not required to repay the loan. If the buyer sells, refinances, or no longer uses the home as their primary residence within the first 5 years after closing, a portion of the loan would need to be repaid.

Property must be located in one of the five communities hit hardest by the foreclosure crisis: Cranston, Pawtucket, Providence, Warwick, Woonsocket


To qualify for the First Down Program you must:

  • Be a first-time homebuyer purchasing a 1-4 family home or condominium
  • Meet RIHousing loan and income limits (see below)
  • Obtain a RIHousing-funded first mortgage through a Participating Lender or RIHousing
  • Occupy the home as a primary residence

Loan Limits

The down payment assistance of $7,500 is forgivable after 5 years of owning the home, and you must maintain it as your primary residence. The maximum loan limit allowed is $454,250 for a one- to four-family home or eligible condominium.

Income limits

To be eligible for the First Down Program, your total annual household income must be less than $93,623 (for a 1-2 person household) or $107,667 (for a 3+ person household).


The First Down Program is only available in conjunction with a RIHousing first mortgage, available through our network of Participating Lenders and the RIHousing Loan Center.

Limited Funds – Act Now


Contact one of our Participating Lenders or Mortgage Originators today to find out more about other program offerings such as the FirstHomes Tax Credit, a great option to help new homebuyers save a little extra money.

Take a Homebuyer Education class
Our Homebuyer Education classes are a perfect resource to help first-time homebuyers learn everything there is to know about buying a home. We offer both in-person and online classes to meet the unique needs of each homebuyer. You can register online or contact us for more information.
Contact a Participating Lender or one of our Mortgage Originators
Once you have taken some time to look through the options available to you as a first-time homebuyer, and are ready to discuss the next step on your path to homeownership, contact one of our Participating Lenders or Mortgage Originators today.