PAH maintains a waiting list of people interested in purchasing a BMR unit. There is a preference given to those who live or work in Palo Alto. Because the waiting list is so long and the number of units limited, it is unlikely a household without this preference would get an opportunity to purchase a unit.
Each applicant must submit an application to the PAH office to be placed on the waiting list. An applicant does not need to meet income or asset requirements to be on the waiting list. Income and asset eligibility requirements are verified at the time of purchase. However, the applicant must return a new application each July when the waiting list is updated in order to maintain a place on the waiting list.
When a below market rate unit becomes available, PAH prepares a package of detailed information about the unit and applicant eligibility criteria. Family income and asset limitations are derived by a formula for each unit, factoring in the price of the unit, property taxes, cost of insurance, homeowner's association dues when applicable, and current financing rates. The information package is sent to all on the waiting list who have the family size required for the unit available and have requested that size unit.
Those who receive the information package will have an opportunity to view the unit and submit a detailed financial statement to PAH before a designated deadline for applications. The applicant with the lowest number on the waiting list who qualifies within the criteria set forth in the package will be selected to pursue financing to purchase the unit. Should adequate financing not be obtained promptly by that party, the purchase opportunity will be passed to the next qualified applicant on the waiting list.
When a BMR owner wishes to sell the unit, he or she must give the City the right of first refusal to buy it. This helps the City to make even more homes available to those in need.