Mercantile Bank commits $250K to homebuyer assistance program

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Scott Setlock Courtesy Mercantile Bank of Michigan

A local bank is investing $250,000 to support affordable homeownership opportunities.

Grand Rapids-based Mercantile Bank of Michigan said last week that it committed $250,000 in funding to its Extra Credit Home Buyer Assistance Program to provide eligible first-time homebuyers up to $3,000 that can be applied toward loan closing costs as well as homeowners insurance and taxes if certain income or property location eligibility requirements are met.

Upfront costs associated with buying a home are often a significant obstacle for potential buyers, especially for those with low to moderate income, Mercantile said. The Extra Credit program is designed to provide resources and support to those who need help, as well as those purchasing a home in a low to moderate-income geographic area.

“It is important that we assist in reducing the barriers to homeownership. By helping pay some of the upfront costs through our Extra Credit program, we are hoping to help make owning a home attainable for more people in our communities,” said Scott Setlock, Mercantile Bank senior vice president and mortgage and consumer loan department head. “Additionally, this program will help to free up the homebuyer’s own funds for down payments, to make the dream of owning a home more attainable.”

Participation in homebuyer classes is required for eligibility in the program. Mercantile Bank said studies show classes that provide homeownership counseling, such as budgeting, finance and tips on improving credit scores and general savings, help create a more successful homebuying experience.

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