1. Learn about this resource. 

Applicants can enter a lottery to buy select reduced price condos or townhomes if their household meets income requirements. DC Government requires that 8-10% of units in most new or renovated condo buildings or townhome developments are sold at a reduced price.

 

This program is called the Inclusionary Zoning Program (IZ) and is offered by the DC Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). The program also offers affordable rental units.

2. Check if you are eligible.

You are eligible if all of these statements are true:

  • If you are a full-time college or university student, you must also be a dependent of someone whose household meets the household income requirements.

  • You can afford the purchase price. This means that your household will spend less than 50% of your before-tax income on housing costs, which include the mortgage, monthly fees, and utilities. 

  • Your household’s yearly gross income—your income before paying taxes—is below the maximum limit for your household size. Check below.

buy a home at a reduced price?

DO YOU WANT TO

DHCD logo.jpg

What happens after I apply?


  1. You’ll begin receiving emails every time an IZ unit is available that we think you might qualify for.
  2. When you see an IZ unit you’re interested in buying, enter the lottery for that unit. You’ll be able to enter the lottery through a link in your email.
  3. Typically ten households are randomly picked in the lottery and given a rank of 1-10. If you are selected in the lottery, you will receive an email with deadlines and details on how to apply.
If you begin the buying process and are deemed not eligible, you can still enter future lotteries as long as your household meets the income criteria.




Are there any additional requirements I should know about?


If you buy an IZ unit, every year you must confirm that the home is your main residence. You can do this by submitting a signed statement and proof to us—the DC Government—at iz.adu@dc.gov. When you sell or refinance the unit, you must contact us to set the affordable sale price.




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 our Inclusionary Zoning team at 202-442-7221, Monday to Friday, 8:15 am to 4:45 pm. Or, you can email the team at iz.adu@dc.gov using the subject line “Inclusionary Zoning Question.”




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 page.




Frequently Asked Questions


Can I use down payment assistance to help buy my IZ unit? Yes, you may use other types of down payment assistance such as the Home Purchase Assistance Program (HPAP). Does the orientation certificate of completion expire? Yes. Both the IZ orientation and homebuyers training certificates expire after two years. To renew your registration, you must retake the courses before your certificates expire. After retaking the courses, you must email your new certificate codes and any household member or income updates to iz.adu@dc.gov. You may not be notified when your certificate is about to expire, so we recommend creating a reminder for yourself. What if my income changes after I purchase a home? Nothing will happen. There are no income requirements after the purchase. If I am given the opportunity to buy an IZ unit, do I have to buy it? No, you can simply tell the property that you are not interested in the home. You will still receive future lottery emails. Can I reapply if I have bought an IZ unit before? Yes. You can reapply, but you can not own two homes at once.




Do all eligible applicants get the chance to buy a home?


No. About 50 units are available for sale each year through this program. There are roughly 500 households interested in buying an IZ unit at any given time. Households are picked through a lottery.





4. Gather more information.

What happens after I apply?


  1. You’ll begin receiving emails every time an IZ unit is available that we think you might qualify for.
  2. When you see an IZ unit you’re interested in buying, enter the lottery for that unit. You’ll be able to enter the lottery through a link in your email.
  3. Typically ten households are randomly picked in the lottery and given a rank of 1-10. If you are selected in the lottery, you will receive an email with deadlines and details on how to apply.
If you begin the buying process and are deemed not eligible, you can still enter future lotteries as long as your household meets the income criteria.




Are there any additional requirements I should know about?


If you buy an IZ unit, every year you must confirm that the home is your main residence. You can do this by submitting a signed statement and proof to us—the DC Government—at iz.adu@dc.gov. When you sell or refinance the unit, you must contact us to set the affordable sale price.




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 our Inclusionary Zoning team at 202-442-7221, Monday to Friday, 8:15 am to 4:45 pm. Or, you can email the team at iz.adu@dc.gov using the subject line “Inclusionary Zoning Question.”




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 page.




Frequently Asked Questions


Can I use down payment assistance to help buy my IZ unit? Yes, you may use other types of down payment assistance such as the Home Purchase Assistance Program (HPAP). Does the orientation certificate of completion expire? Yes. Both the IZ orientation and homebuyers training certificates expire after two years. To renew your registration, you must retake the courses before your certificates expire. After retaking the courses, you must email your new certificate codes and any household member or income updates to iz.adu@dc.gov. You may not be notified when your certificate is about to expire, so we recommend creating a reminder for yourself. What if my income changes after I purchase a home? Nothing will happen. There are no income requirements after the purchase. If I am given the opportunity to buy an IZ unit, do I have to buy it? No, you can simply tell the property that you are not interested in the home. You will still receive future lottery emails. Can I reapply if I have bought an IZ unit before? Yes. You can reapply, but you can not own two homes at once.




Do all eligible applicants get the chance to buy a home?


No. About 50 units are available for sale each year through this program. There are roughly 500 households interested in buying an IZ unit at any given time. Households are picked through a lottery.





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Keywords: lottery, homebuyer, reduced price, income limits, condominium, townhouse, down payment, lower price, affordable housing

 

This page was last updated May 2021.

You do not need to be a DC resident or work in DC to apply. However, the program must prioritize households that live or work in DC due to regulations.