One of the hardest things for people who have outstanding student loans is being able to make the payments. As if that wasn’t hard enough, in many cases, the student loans also impede them from being able to do other things they may be thinking about. Issues such as considering getting a mortgage can sometimes be seen as out of the question. However, with Maryland’s student debt forgiveness through mortgage loans new program, that is becoming more of a possibility for many now. The project is being hailed as one which could revolutionize homeownership for student loan borrowers.

The Maryland SmartBuy Program

The program’s name is called Maryland SmartBuy and it has $10 million allocated for the purpose of helping students. The Maryland SmartBuy program is great news for all of those who want to get rid of their college debt and still be able to purchase a home. This new scheme can be seen as lifeline to those who are hampered by their student loan debt and were thinking of entering the real estate market. Part of the American dream has always been for a person to be able to one day own their own home or property. Still, with school debt accounting for so much of the monetary woes young people face today, SmartBuy can be a lifesaver and game changer for those that participate in it.

Speaking at an event to kick off this program, Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford stated, “Traditionally, people in their 20s and 30s would account for a substantial share of Maryland’s first-time homebuyers.” He continued on saying “But we’ve seen a little difference in that demographic over the years, and it’s believed that student loan debt is a part of the challenge.”  This initiative can be seen as way to help narrow those margins by opening the doors to potential home buyers hampered by student loans.

Students in Debt Get a Helping Hand

Students who are in debt with school loans are seeing this initiative as receiving a helping hand. One of the ways SmartBuy works is by paying off 15% of the home’s value and putting it towards the student loan or debt which may be outstanding. An example of how it works is as follows; if a person who was purchasing a home that cost $200,000, then they would receive $30,000 to use towards their loans. The student would then be left responsible to pay off any other debt owed. There is a five percent deposit required though. However, since $10 million have been made available for those that want to sign up, there are many out there who should be able to take advantage of the program. First time buyers can use this initiative as a way to get into the real estate market.

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Requirements for SmartBuy Program

There are some important details for any student in debt who may want to know about the requirements for the SmartBuy program. First, anyone looking to purchase a house needs to have a student debt of a least $1,000. Secondly, they also need to be up to date with all of their loan repayments. Another requirement is that buyers are required to stay in the property they purchase for at least 5 years minimum. Every house purchased must be financed via the Maryland Mortgage Program as well. In addition, only the homes owned by the Maryland housing department are eligible for the program. For those interested in reading about the entire project, they can view the STUDENT LOAN DEBT – The Maryland Mortgage Program in PDF here.

There are almost 20 ready to move in homes available according to Michael White, a spokesman for the department. The prices of the homes range from $70,000 to $310,000. The houses already available for purchase are scattered all over the state.  Some of the areas that were really affected by the housing crisis – Prince George’s County and Baltimore – have several properties ready to be purchased. For anyone who is thinking about buying a home and is having second thoughts about that because of student debt, the SmartBuy program is a perfect opportunity. This means that the road to the American dream of owning a home is no longer off the table for them due to any outstanding student loans.