January 13, 2017
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Announces 37th Proposal of 2017 State of the State: Encourage Recent College Graduates to Become First-Time Homeowners in Upstate Communities

Governor Cuomo Announces 37th Proposal of 2017 State of the State: Encourage Recent College Graduates to Become First-Time Homeowners in Upstate Communities

$5 Million Graduate to Homeownership Pilot Program Will Provide Homebuyer Assistance to Recent College Graduates Program Includes Subsidized Low Interest Loans, Down Payment Assistance and Financial and Homebuyer Education Courses Complements Governor’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative to Transform Communities Across New York

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today unveiled a new Graduate to Homeownership Program to provide recent college graduates with homebuyer assistance to remain Upstate, especially in downtown areas. Despite being home to some of the nation’s top colleges, many Upstate communities struggle to retain recent graduates. This $5 million pilot program will incentivize homeownership with subsidized low interest loans, down payment assistance and homebuyer education courses to encourage young people to stay and continue revitalizing Upstate New York’s downtown areas.

“Upstate colleges and universities have world-class programs that produce highly skilled graduates -- who then leave for opportunities elsewhere,” Governor Cuomo said. “This program will incentivize recent graduates to put down roots in upstate communities, helping to bring new energy into their downtown centers, spur their development and increase their economic vitality.”

Growth and revitalization of metropolitan areas are fueled and sustained by new residents coming to the region, such as graduates from local colleges and universities. New York City leads the nation with more than 71 percent of students from colleges and universities remaining in the area after they graduate, but many Upstate communities, including Rochester and Buffalo, have struggled to retain graduates.

This program will provide recent college graduates with additional first-time homebuyer assistance to remain in upstate communities with downtown areas and urban centers. The program will be tailored to students and recent graduates, and include online or on-campus financial and homebuyer education courses, as well as a subsidized low-interest first-time homebuyer loans through the State of New York Mortgage Agency that has made homeownership possible for more than 8,000 New Yorkers in the last six years.

The Graduate to Homeownership Program will foster new regional magnets where businesses may access New York’s diverse and talented workforce, setting the stage for the entrepreneurial energy needed to continue revitalizing Upstate New York’s downtown areas. The initial pilot program of $5 million will be expanded in future years of the program if proven successful.

Downtown Revitalization Initiative

This program complements Governor Cuomo’s existing efforts to revitalize communities across New York, especially Upstate. The Downtown Revitalization Initiative is a $100 million program to transform communities ripe for development into vibrant neighborhoods where the next generation of New Yorkers will want to live and work. This year, 10 communities across the state were each awarded $10 million in state funding to revitalize the local neighborhood and generate new opportunities for long-term growth and prosperity.


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