The Fort Smith Housing Authority
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Am I eligible to purchase a home from the Fort Smith Housing Authority?

We are required to sell our houses to buyers who can meet the low – median income guidelines.  The Housing Authority also asks home buyers to attend the First-Time Homebuyers one-day class put on by Crawford-Sebastian Community Development Council. The primary lending institution of your choice qualifies the buyer for a loan; however, we can assist in providing banking institutions that currently work with our program. 

What are the current low - median income limits for families in the Fort Smith area?

The number of people in the household determines the maximum amount of income a family can have and still qualify to purchase one of our Affordable Housing Program houses. Low – median income families must have enough income to qualify for the house they are interested in without going over the incomes listed on page two of the packet. 

Why are we required to have a second mortgage on the houses built through the Fort Smith Housing Authority?

You will need to obtain a primary mortgage (called home loan) from a lending institution for the sale price, and the Housing Authority takes the down payment assistance off the sale price.  The down payment assistance is then secured by the Fort Smith Housing Authority along with the City of Fort Smith with a soft second mortgage.  The second mortgage, a forgivable loan, will run the first 10 years and requires that you continue to occupy the home as your primary residence and follow the deed restrictions. A portion of the second mortgage is forgiven annually over the course of the loan.  

Can I finance through the Fort Smith Housing Authority?

No, a prospective buyer will need to secure primary financing through any local lending institution of their choice.  

What information should I need to provide at loan application?

When you visit with Paul McCollom, our Homeownership Coordinator, he has a list of documents and verifications needed to be presented at loan application to the lender.  He can accompany you to the lender to answer any questions that might arise concerning the sale and construction of the house.  

How much will I need for closing costs?

We require the buyer to pay 1% of the sales price for closing cost. For instance, if a house sells for $75,000.00, a buyer would be required to have $750.00 out of their pocket to close the loan. The remainder of your closing cost can be financed in with your loan.  

Are house payments cheaper than rent?

In most of our sales they have been.  Our buyers using current interest rates usually pay about $450.00 to $500.00 per month (including principal, interest, taxes and insurance) on a 3br, 2ba home with a sales price of about $68,650.00 for a 30-year loan.  Interest rates vary depending on available bond money and credit scores.


Paul McCollom

Homeownership Coordinator

2100 North 31st Street

Fort Smith, AR 72904

479-782-4991 ext.34


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2100 North 31st Street | Fort Smith, AR 72904 | Phone: 479-782-4991 | Administrative Fax: 479-782-0120 | Section 8 Fax: 479-709-9381