We are pleased to announce the start of the application period for the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco's 2019 homeownership programs - the Workforce Initiative Subsidy for Homeownership (WISH) Program and the Individual Development and Empowerment Account (IDEA) Program. The deadline to submit an application to reserve WISH and IDEA funds is February 11, 2019.
Our WISH and IDEA matching grant programs offer the Bank's member financial institutions an opportunity to support affordable, sustainable homeownership for first-time homebuyers while achieving community investment goals. The funding for WISH and IDEA is set aside each year from the Bank's annual AHP contribution and made available to homebuyers through our members.
Both WISH and IDEA currently offer eligible low- to moderate-income households 3-to-1 matching grants of up to $15,000 for the purchase of a home, which can be applied to downpayment and closing costs. As a result of amendments to the AHP regulation that became effective December 28, 2018, the Bank may increase the maximum grant amount in 2019. Look for announcements about this and other potential changes to our programs in the coming months.
WISH grants help working families and individuals move from renting to owning and can complement or supplement many local, state, and federal homeownership programs and initiatives. IDEA grants help homebuyers who have been saving for the purchase of their first home through an Individual Development Account or by participating in their local housing authority's Family Self-Sufficiency Program homeownership program or in a lease-to-own program administered by a government entity or nonprofit organization.
Only members of the Bank may apply for WISH and IDEA funds. The maximum reservation request per member is a combined $4 million for the two programs. Members are advised to base the amount of their request on the number of eligible homebuyers who are expected to close or be in escrow on a home purchase by March 31, 2020, since all funds allocated in 2019 must be used by that date. We expect to notify members of the allocations on or around April 1, 2019.