More than 335,000 real estate professionals in 20 multiple listing services and associations now have access to a tool that allows them to see which homes may qualify for down payment assistance programs.

The latest MLSs to license Down Payment Resource are Central Virginia Regional MLS with more than 5,000 members and Realcomp II Ltd., Michigan’s largest Realtor-owned MLS with nearly 12,000 members.

About 88 percent of CVR MLS’s residential listings and about 71 percent of Realcomp’s residential listings may be eligible for one or more down payment assistance programs, according to Atlanta-based Workforce Resource, which developed the tool.

Listings eligible for down payment assistance, grants, affordable first mortgages, tax credits, and other help are flagged with a Down Payment Resource icon in the MLS system.

Once the tool is fully implemented for CVR MLS agents and brokers, they’ll be able to search, share and suggest eligible properties and programs to their clients by email, and invite buyers to enter household information to help match them to programs and homes, the company said.

“This is going to be an excellent tool for Realtors to use to assist homebuyers in exploring a wide variety of available resources. For many homebuyers, producing a down payment can be the biggest challenge in the process, and this product will help them find feasible ways to meet the challenge,” said Mark Joyner, president of CVR MLS, in a statement.

Renters often overestimate the down payment they need to buy their first home, according to Rob Chrane, president and CEO of Down Payment Resource.

“Many homebuyers could buy sooner if they knew about available homeownership programs in their community,” he said in a statement.

Other MLSs and associations that have licensed the tool include the California Association of Realtors, Midwest Real Estate Data (MRED), My Florida Regional MLS, First Multiple Listing Service (FMLS), Northstar MLS, Heartland MLS and Hawaii’s HiCentral MLS. The latter has incorporated the tool into its public-facing websites.

In July, Down Payment Resource partnered with W&R Studios to incorporate information on down payment assistance programs into the firm’s Cloud CMA tool.

Last year, the company made its database of down payment assistance programs available to the public through the website DownPaymentResource.com.

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