Franklin & Marshall College Franklin & Marshall College

Settlement Assistance

The Settlement Assistance program is designed to increase the number of employee-owned and occupied residences within our neighborhood by making purchasing a home more affordable. The program is also designed to improve the appearance and maintenance of the homes. With the Settlement Assistance program, eligible employees may apply to the College for a deferred payment loan of up to $10,000. Payable at settlement, the funds may be used to assist with closing costs, the down payment, and interior & exterior home improvements. Where home improvements are contemplated, the nature and scope of the work is subject to approval. Further, if an employee buys a home that has been subdivided, the employee may apply to the College for a deferred payment loan of up to $5,000 to convert the residence back to a single-family home. The Settlement Assistance program can be used in conjunction with the Mortgage Guarantee program. Below are the parameters of the Settlement Assistance program:

Parameters:

  • For the City Life loan, the maximum purchase price is $200,000 (or the prevailing conforming loan amount or the bank's appraised value, whichever is less.)  For the Keystone Home Loan, the maximum purchase price is also $200,000.

  • One or two family dwellings only. Condominiums must be Fannie Mae approved.

  • Within the established area east of the College surrounded by College Avenue, Orange Street, Arch Street and Harrisburg Pike as indicated on the attached map.

  • Applies when mortgage is obtained from Fulton Bank.

  • Must meet all the normal lending criteria required by the lender.

  • The lender determines the interest rate of the bank mortgage. To obtain current rates, please telephone the lender directly at (717) 291-2873.

  • Home must be and remain your principal residence.

  • For the College's loan, no interest payments will be due and the loan will be forgiven at 20% per annum over five years (subject to any applicable IRS regulations.)

  • For any College loan granted under this program, the unforgiven balance of the loan will be due and payable if:

    • the employee ceases to occupy the property as his/her principal residence

    • the employee ceases to be the owner of the property

  • College funds may be used for the down payment, closing costs, interior & exterior home improvements. If College funds will be used for home improvements, the nature and scope of the work is subject to approval.

The College's program is offered to eligible credit-worthy employees under an arrangement with the lender. An applicant for a bank loan under the program will be subject to credit verification and must satisfy the lender with regard to the ability to repay the mortgage based upon the lender's criteria. The decision to grant the bank loan rests solely with the lender.

If you cease to occupy the home as your principal residence or cease to own the home, it is your responsibility to notify the Investment Office at immediately.

Eligibility:

  • Faculty and professional staff appointed to full-time positions, as well as part-time employees appointed to positions pre-authorized by the College to work 1,000 hours or more per year, are eligible to participate in the City Life Program.  The following are not eligible to participate in the City Life Program: (a) faculty and professional staff appointed on a fixed-term temporary, or seasonal basis, including full-time visiting faculty, (b) adjunct faculty, and (c) part-time employees not authorized by the College to work 1,000 hours or more per year.

  • Employment in good standing

  • 21 years of age or older

  • United States citizen, permanent resident alien, or H-1B visa holder

  • If there is more than one employee in the household, the program will apply only once.

    Note:  Not available to employees who already own a home and reside in the established area.  Not available to employees who participated in the College’s Home Buyer Incentive Program.

Procedure:

  • Prior to beginning your search for a home, we will verify your eligibility for the program. Send an e-mail to requesting a review of your eligibility. We'll respond to you and Fulton Bank.

  • Prior to beginning your search for a home, speak with a lender to determine the amount you'll be eligible to borrow. Call Fulton Bank at (717) 291-2873.

  • Interview several Realtors, check references and select a Realtor to assist you with your house hunt.

  • First-time home buyers must complete the workshop offered by the Lancaster Housing Opportunity Partnership (LHOP). To register for the workshop, visit their website at www.lancasterhousing.org.

  • Before you make an offer on a specific home, send an e-mail to requesting verification that the home qualifies for the program. We'll respond to you and Fulton Bank.

  • Prior to signing an Agreement of Sale, we strongly recommended that you secure the services of an attorney knowledgeable in real estate matters.

  • Once you and the Seller have an executed Agreement of Sale, send a copy of the signed Agreement to the Investment Office located in the Race Avenue building (RAC.)

  • Contact the lender to complete the loan application process.

  • If you intend to use any of the College's loaned funds for home improvements, submit the completed Home Improvement Worksheet, along with a detailed scope of the proposed home improvement plans, to the Investment Office at least three weeks prior to settlement.

  • The College will obtain verification directly from the lender when your bank mortgage has been approved. We will also obtain the amount of the down payment, estimated closing costs and settlement date.

  • We will contact you to schedule a pre-settlement conference with Kathy Fish in the Investment Office. Proposed home improvements will be reviewed at that time.

  • Prior to settlement, the College will confirm your eligibility again and confirm the amount of the College's loan. We will forward the Neighborhood Housing Program Agreement and the College's loaned funds directly to the lender for your signature at settlement. The signed Agreement and a copy of the settlement sheet will be returned to the College by the lender.

  • When the home improvement work has been completed, forward a copy of the paid invoice(s) to the Investment Office.

This information is intended only as a general review of the College's programs. Your loans will be governed by the detailed terms and conditions of the mortgage loan documents, including the note and mortgage, and the Neighborhood Housing Program Agreement. Should there be any inconsistency between this program's description and those documents, the terms and conditions of the note, mortgage and Neighborhood Housing Program Agreement shall govern.

 

This information is intended as a general overview only. The terms, conditions and procedures of the City Life programs are subject to change at the College’s discretion. We strongly urge you to seek the advice of knowledgeable legal counsel when contemplating a real estate purchase.