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Guaranteed Rate First to Offer 1% Down Payment Loans to Chicago Home Buyers, Partnering With the City of Chicago to Provide Home Buyer Grants up to 7%

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - June 09, 2016) - Guaranteed Rate, the largest mortgage provider in the City of Chicago, today announced its partnering with the City of Chicago and Chicago Infrastructure Trust (CIT) to offer a mortgage program to help Chicago residents become homeowners. The Chicago Home Buyer Assistance Program will allow Chicagoans to qualify for a home loan by lowering one of the biggest hurdles to homeownership: the down payment. The program will offer up to seven percent of the final loan amount as a forgivable grant. Guaranteed Rate hopes to help more Chicago families realize the comfort and stability of homeownership.

The City of Chicago announced the program in January, and Guaranteed Rate is the first City-approved lender/servicer to start offering the grant to residents.

"Mayor Emanuel remains focused on his goal of building a stronger, more durable city economy that gives every hardworking Chicagoan a chance to participate," said Leslie Darling, Executive Director of the Chicago Infrastructure Trust. "Through our partnership with Guaranteed Rate, this Program will strengthen our neighborhoods by providing working- and middle-class Chicago home buyers with the financial support they need for down payments and closing costs."

"Guaranteed Rate was founded in Chicago and remains headquartered here today," said Victor Ciardelli, CEO of Guaranteed Rate. "We are very grateful for the opportunity to partner with the City of Chicago and the Chicago Infrastructure Trust to help our fellow Chicagoans more easily refinance or purchase their homes."

The Chicago Home Buyer Assistance Program is open to anyone purchasing a home or condo in Chicago. Current owners can use it to refinance, to purchase a move-up home, or to downsize, and first time homebuyers can use it to escape rent payments. All buyers must occupy the home as their primary residence. Program participants must reside in the purchased property for at least five years before selling or refinancing. If the home is sold or refinance before that time, the homeowner will have to pay back a prorated amount of the grant. After five years of on time mortgage payments, the grant is completely forgiven.

Borrowers must purchase a home within the city limits. Single-family homes, condominiums, town houses and up to four-unit multi-family buildings are eligible. Unlike other down payment assistance programs, the Chicago Home Buyer Assistance Program allows buyers to have an annualized income up to $133,000, regardless of family size, for conventional loans. The borrower needs to contribute the lesser of one percent of the home purchase price or $1,000.

The program is administered by the CIT, which works in conjunction with Guaranteed Rate.

More about Guaranteed Rate:

Guaranteed Rate is the eighth largest retail mortgage lender in the United States. The company has become The Home Purchase Experts® by introducing the world's first Digital Mortgage and offering low rate, low fee mortgages through an easy-to-understand process and unparalleled customer service. Headquartered in Chicago with approximately 175 offices across the U.S., and licensed in all 50 states, Guaranteed Rate has helped hundreds of thousands of homeowners with approximately $80 billion in home purchase loans and refinances since 2000 and $10 billion in 2015 alone. Guaranteed Rate was ranked No. 1 in Scotsman Guide's Top Mortgage Lenders 2014 honors and was named one of Chicago's Top Workplaces by the Chicago Tribune in four of the past five years. In 2015, Guaranteed Rate won the Chicago Coolest Company Award by Chicago Inno and was recognized as one of Inc. 5000's Fastest Growing Companies in America. Visit guaranteedrate.com for more information.

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