1. Learn about this resource. 

DC Government employees can receive both down payment and closing cost assistance, up to a $20,000 loan, to purchase a single family home, condominium, or cooperative unit in the District.  You can also receive a matching grant—funds you don’t have to pay back—of up to $5,000. There are no income restrictions to participate, however, the home sales price cannot exceed $726,525


This program is called the Employer-Assisted Housing Program and is offered by the Department of Housing and Community Development.

2. Check if you are eligible.

You are eligible if all of these statements are true:

  • You are currently a full-time DC Government employee.

  • You have been a DC Government employee for at least one year. If you’re a police officer, corrections officer, firefighter, emergency medical technician, paramedic, or a teacher in a public or public charter school the minimum one-year employment requirement is waived.

  • You are in good standing with your employer. This means there were no disciplinary actions filed against you in the past three years.

  • You have not owned a home in DC in the past three years. 


You do not need to be a current DC resident to apply for the program.

get up to $25,000 to buy a home as a DC Government employee?


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3. Apply.

  1. Schedule an appointment with a housing counselor by calling one of these organizations to attend orientation.
  2. After orientation, contact the housing counselor for application intake. Submit the necessary documents listed in your application package to the counselor so they can confirm your eligibility.
  3. If eligible, the housing counselor will finalize and send your application to the program administrator for review.
You can apply at any time.

4. Gather more information.

What happens after I apply?

  1. The program administrator will review the application and determine your eligibility. The current program administrator is the Greater Washington Urban League.
  2. You will receive a Notice of Eligibility by mail. The notice includes the maximum amount of assistance available to you and the next steps to take.
  3. The Notice of Eligibility is active for one year. During that time, you will need to complete the homebuying process along with the help of one of our organization partners:
    • Complete an eight hour homebuying training with one of our partners.
    • Find a first trust lender and a home you’d like to buy. We recommend finding a realtor to support you through the process.
    • Once your offer is accepted, have the home inspected.
  4. The program administrator will review your first trust lender’s package and will send you a firm commitment.
  5. After the home inspection report and insurance documentation is received, a settlement date will be scheduled and you’ll be given wire instructions to transfer payment to your title company for the purchase.
  6. You’re in your home.
If your application is not approved, you can reapply, but you must meet eligibility criteria when you reapply.

Are there any additional requirements I should know about?

  • The home that you buy must be your main place of residence, so you can’t rent it out to others. You are still allowed to own property outside of DC.
  • If you are a first responder, you could also receive additional assistance up to $10,000 in the form of a down payment assistance grant (funds you do not have to pay back). To receive this grant, you must remain a DC first responder for five years after purchasing the home and live in the home as your main residence. First Responders are also eligible to receive matching grants funds up to $15,000.

Who should I contact if I have questions?

First, take a look at the frequently asked questions at the bottom of the page. If you still have questions, please reach out to the Employer-Assisted Housing Program team at (202) 442-7200, Monday to Friday, 8:15 am to 4:45 pm. Or, you can email the team at dhcd@dc.gov using the subject line, “EAHP.”

I still need help preparing to buy a home. What should I do?

You can find information about other resources that might help on our prepare to buy a home resources page.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much can DC employees receive? DC Government employees receive an interest free loan up to $20,000. DC first responders can get an additional loan up to $10,000. Matching grant funds range from $1,000 to $5,000 for DC Government employees and $1,500 to $15,000 for first responders. I’m a first responder interested in the additional grant. What happens if I leave my job during the five year agreement period? If you leave your job or home before the five years are up, the $10,000 grant converts to a deferred zero interest loan. When is repayment due on the Employer-Assisted Housing Program Loan? The loan remains deferred for the first five years as long as the borrower is living in the property. After five years, if the borrower wants to move, monthly payments are required. Full repayment of the loan is due when the borrower sells or transfers the property. What is a first trust lender? This is the entity that provides you with a mortgage to buy your home. If you do not pay your mortgage, the first trust lender has the right, before any other lenders, to foreclose on your home. They are first. Can I use this financial assistance with other assistance the District offers? Yes. If you meet the eligibility criteria, you can also receive assistance from the Home Purchase Assistance Program and the Negotiated Employee Assisted Housing Program. Can I receive a grant if I have received one from this program before? Yes, you can receive EAHP assistance as long as you are a first time homebuyer. This means you cannot have owned residential real estate for the previous three years.

Do all eligible applicants receive down payment assistance and matching funds grant?

No, funding for the program is limited.

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Keywords: DC Government, deferred loan, interest-free loan, matching funds, District Government employee, homebuying assistance, down payment, closing costs, title fees, homeowner's insurance, mortgage, buying a home, homebuyer, first-time homeowner, District employee, DC employee benefits


This page was last updated February 2021.