Homebuyer Assistance Program

The Homebuyer Assistance Program is offered for employees of the Development Association of Rock Island (DARI) members wishing to buy a home anywhere within the city limits of Rock Island.

The Live Work RI Program provides help with down payment and closing cost assistance. The program includes individualized counseling and an educational workshop that will lead you through the process of selecting, purchasing, and maintaining a home. Eligible homebuyers participating in the Live Work RI Program are granted:

  • Up to 5% of the home’s purchase price for down payment assistance
  • Up to $1,500 for closing costs
  • Homebuyer can earn up to 120% of the area median income

Please call (309) 788-6311 for more information about this program or to make a reservation for a homebuyer education class.

  • Applicant must fill out an application.
  • A budget is required and recommended as the first step before considering home ownership
  • Meet employer eligibility requirements (A list of companies that participate in the home buyer program can be found here). Don't see your company on the list? Have them give us a call to learn more!
  • Earn at or below 120% of the Area Median Income
  • The home must be in the City of Rock Island
  • Qualify for a mortgage loan
  • Attend homebuyer education class
  • Homebuyer must be an employee of an eligible DARI member company
  • Homebuyer must contribute a minimum $1,000 to the transaction

Funding is allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis. All are encouraged to apply.


Beginning Steps
  • Step 1: Complete an application! Apply as soon as you begin thinking seriously about purchasing a home. We are here to help guide you through the entire process, from start to finish. Your application must be approved prior to making an offer on a home.
  • Step 2: Set up a meeting with GROWTH! They have four HUD-certified Housing Counselors that will meet with you and provide you with the financial tools needed to achieve your goal of homeownership. Send an email to [email protected] or call (309) 788-6311 to inquire.
  • Step 3: Participate in a webinar! Attending a one-day homebuyer education webinar is required prior to making any offer on a home. The classes are held once per month and you can register online to attend. There is no cost to the homebuyer. Send an email to [email protected] or call (309) 788-6311 to register.
2024 Class Schedule:

The homebuyer class, “Preparing for Successful Homeownership” is held once per month.

Currently we are holding the class in person with limited seating and as a live webinar.

All classes are on Saturday from 8:30 a.m.- 2:30 p.m. in the McKesson Lofts building, located at 100 19th Street, Rock Island, IL. Reservations are required.

If you choose to participate in the live webinar, please contact our office at least one day before the class so a webinar link may be emailed to you.

Participants will need an email address and an internet connection to watch the webinar and ask questions. A smartphone, a computer, or tablet is sufficient.

If internet service is not available, participants may call into the webinar and listen only.

For reservations, call 309-788-6311.

All 2024 Homebuyer classes are on Saturday:
        • January 13th
        • February 17th
        • March 9th
        • April 13th
        • May 11th
        • June 8th
        • July 13th
        • August 17th
        • September 14th
        • October 12th
        • November 16th
        • December class tentative
Frequently Asked Questions

When Should I Apply?
Complete an application as soon as you begin thinking seriously about purchasing a home. Our housing staff is here to guide you through the entire home buying process, start to finish. The Live-Work Rock Island program cannot work for you if you wait until after you make an offer-to-purchase.

Do I Have to Get a Home Loan?
You will need to qualify for a first mortgage loan from an approved lender. Our housing staff work one on one to assist you with financial education and help you obtain financing that is affordable and easily understood.

Can I use a REALTOR®?
We strongly encourage you to work with a qualified REALTOR®. Find one that you are comfortable with because he/she can save you a lot of time and money.

How Long Does it Take?
Once a completed application has been submitted, our housing staff will typically review your completed application and provide a plan of action within 5 business days. Staff will also schedule a meeting with you to review the plan and help you take steps needed to apply for a first mortgage loan from a participating lender of your choice. Once approved for the program, offers-to-purchase must allow for 30 days between acceptance of the offer and closing.

For Realtors and Lenders Working with Live Work RI Homebuyers

If you are working with a buyer interested in going through Live-Work Rock Island program, please note that it is important for the buyer to:

  • Sign up for our homebuyer education class
  • Complete the application and submit it to our Housing Manager for approval. Our Housing Manager will determine eligibility and provide a plan of action within 5 business days of a completed application

Making an Offer-to-Purchase:
Before making an offer, the homebuyer must be approved for our program. The homebuyer must have the assistance program application filled out and all financial information turned into our office before the Housing Manger can approve the application. The Homebuyer Assistance Program and amount of assistance must also be noted in the offer-to-purchase.

Additional questions?
For more information, call (309) 788-6311 or email [email protected]. Our Corporate office is located at 100 19th, Ste 109, Rock Island, IL 61201.