Settlement Down Payment Loan

August 13, 2018 - Howard County Executive Allan H. Kittleman today announced that $500,000 is now available in the County’s Settlement Downpayment Loan Program (SDLP) to assist working families planning to buy homes in Howard County.

Eligible homebuyers can choose from five loan products, depending on their income and assets. They can borrow up to $40,000 at low interest rates and loan repayment is deferred until resale, refinance or default. Incentives such as loan forgiveness are available under the Workforce Initiative Loan for households that work in Howard County.

SDLP loans can be used to purchase homes selling up to $476,471. Borrowers must occupy the home as their primary residence. Last year the program helped 66 families with downpayment and closing costs for home purchases in Howard County.

PURPOSE: To assist homebuyers with financing for settlement/downpayment costs.

SCOPE: Loans are available through Howard County Housing for settlement and downpayment costs. All loans will be deferred, due upon sale of home, refinance, or default. Low interest rates at 2 points below the primary mortgage interest rate. Lenders will process all requests.

ELIGIBILITY: Applicants must meet the following:

  • Income limits: See income chart located in the information packet below – page 4 (income limits subject to change every January and July).
  • House price limit: $476,471 (CDA purchase price limit for Howard County applies).
  • First-time homebuyer for HomeStarter, HomeSteader, and DreamMaker Loans. First-time homebuyer restriction not required for Revitalization and Workforce Initiative Loans.
  • Have a minimum of $1,000 to apply towards settlement/downpayment costs plus one month PITI (mortgage payment) in savings account.
  • Lack sufficient funds to pay for the total settlement/downpayment costs.
  • Must be approved for a fixed rate primary mortgage loan.


  • Complete an application with an approved lender.
  • Once the loan is approved with your lender, the lender will reserve funds directly with HCD.
  • The lender will send all the required documents, including the application, to HCD for processing funds.
  • Funding reservations are made only by the lender once all the necessary documents, including the primary mortgage loan approval letter, have been submitted to Howard County Housing.
  • If you're a soon-to-be homebuyer or a lender who'd like to know more, see our SDLP Information Packet.
You may also contact Linda Phillips, SDLP Administrator with the Department of Housing & Community Development at 410-313-6318, option 4, or
All homebuyers participating in the Settlement/Downpayment Loan Program are required to participate in pre-purchase counseling. Certificates are issued to the homebuyer in order to settle on the home purchase.

Funds are currently available and are offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. Interested homebuyers should contact a participating first mortgage lender to begin the application process.

Availability of funds is limited.