• Leslie Lewallen

Ask Leslie- Down Payment Assistance



Today's Question:

What are some solutions you’d provide for communities of color and low-income families to afford the down payment of a first-time home?

Leslie responds:


There are many Federal and State programs available to these communities and families which are simply not known or ultimately utilized by them. We need city leaders to help educate Camas residents about these programs. There are some potential Federal reforms in concept that focus on improving first-time homeownership opportunities for BIPOC and low-income families. Improved Access to Credit - new, alternative credit scoring models intended to expand credit access to low-income or minority borrowers; Expand Availability of the 30-Year Mortgage - improving low-income and minority borrowers access to long-term loans to lower their monthly mortgage payments, to name a couple. To the extent city leaders can support these efforts, we should.


As a city councilor, I would explore local incentives, alternative funding options and grants to support increased homeownership for BIPOC and low-income families. Solutions like incentivizing senior housing or other affordable housing projects, and providing down-payment assistance to BIPOC or low-income families, when and where appropriate. Grants from entities the Washington State Housing Trust Fund, Clark County’s Community Development Block Grant program or HOME Investment Partnership programs may be utilized to offset costs of these options and avoid impact to our Camas taxpayers. We need collaboration among many parties and officials to bring these options into reality. This is the type of the relationship I envision between legislators, city staff, residents, and local Realtors. Together, we can make this happen.


Thanks for the question. If you have a question, just send me a note at leslieforcamas@gmail.com.


- Leslie



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