HANDS of Central Florida Inc – City of Lakeland SHIP Purchase Assistance Program

Special Alert

Maximum Purchase Price


Contact Info:

https://www.cflhands.org/home 1707 Orlando Central Parkway Suite 350, Orlando, FL 32809


Credit Score Requirements

Based on 1st mortgage requirements.

Deferred Payments?

Determined by first mortgage product or lender.

Accepted First Mortgage Type:

Freddie Mac, Freddie Mac HFA Advantage, Freddie Mac Home Possible, Fannie Mae, Fannie Mae HFA Preferred, Fannie Mae HomeReady, FHA 203(b)

Homeowners Education Class:


Is Forgivable?

Down Payment Assistance: Due in full in first 5 years in the event of sale, buyer’s failure to occupy property, refinance, transfer of title. Payback is 50% in years 6-10. Forgiven after 10 years. Closing Cost Amount given as a grant


Lakeland Property must be within the City limits of Lakeland, FL

Income Limitations:

Yes, based on Compliance Income (including household income) Income limits from HUD 2023 120% AMI guidelines The SHIP Program can serve households earning up to 120% of the area median income limit based on household size, depending on the availability of funds. HANDS will be required to calculate the gross income of the entire household that is anticipated to be received during the next 12 months to determine eligibility for assistance. SHIP income limits are updated annually through Florida Housing Finance Corporation. NOTE: FHA lenders should determine income eligibility based on FHA secondary financing underwriting procedures, and obtain HUD approval if requesting funds for an applicant over 115% of the median income.

Maximum Assistance

$36,000 Down Payment Assistance Amount varies based on Income category of household: Up to $20,000 for Very-Low, Low and Moderate income households; Additional $10,000 in City of Lakeland Midtown CRA District (call for map); Additional up to $6,000 grant to buyer for closing costs.

Education Requirements Info:

To receive assistance, whomever will be listed on the Deed must attend a HANDS of Central Florida, Inc. Homebuyer Education Class or another HUD-approved homebuyer education provider. Education classes are provided by HANDS on a regular basis. Clients may register on-line for classes. View the available class schedule at http://cflhands.org. Select the “Services” tab and then select “Purchasing in Polk County. You can also contact HANDS directly for details. Call 863-682-1025

Eligible Property Types:

Single Family Detached Condo Townhome/PUD

Income By Household Size:

HH1HH2HH3HH4HH5HH6HH7HH8 $60,000$68,640$77,160$85,680$92,640$99,480$106,320$113,160 *Income limits as of 06/05/2023

Qualifying Ratios:

Housing Ratio: Up To 33% Total DTI: Up To 45% For the City of Lakeland program the front-end ratio cannot exceed 33%, and the back-end ratio cannot exceed 45%.