The City of Milpitas Below Market Rate (BMR) Program is designed to assist very-low, low- and moderate income households in becoming homeowners.

Who is eligible?

To be eligible for a below market rate home, you must be a first-time homebuyer (meaning you, as the applicant and your spouse or co-applicants have not owned a home during the 3-year period prior to date of the application), have the ability to provide at least 10% required down payment, and household’s income cannot exceed very-low, low- or moderate as defined by the California Department of Housing and Community Development, please refer to the chart below.

For more information, please download the application under the tab to the right.

2021 Department of Housing and Community Development(HCD) Income Limits

City BMR Preferences:

The City Council adopted a priority system for BMR units giving first preference to the following people (in the following order):

1.       Families of Veterans and Servicemen and Women

  • To qualify for this preference, a member of your household must be a Veteran of the U.S. military.

2.       Persons that have been displaced by public or private action. Some examples of actions that would qualify under this preference point are listed below. Others will be determined on a case by case basis:

  • Federal, State or local government action related to code enforcement, public improvement or development.
  • Action taken by a housing owner which is beyond an applicant’s control, including a rent increase that is beyond the ability of the renter to pay and results in eviction.

3.       People that live in Milpitas (at least 90 days)

4.       People that work in Milpitas

5.       People who live in Santa Clara County (at least 90 days)

Is financial assistance available?

The City provides limited amount of down payment assistance for very-low and low-income households who are approved and ready to purchase a BMR property.

 How do I apply?

1.       Obtain an application from City Hall, click the download application button on this webpage or download at: 


2.       Submit all required documentation as listed on the application

3.       If you are submitting for a preference, please provide applicable documentation

4.       After submission, you will be placed on the waiting list based on time of submission and preference (if applicable) until a unit becomes available in your income category.

 Currently the City of Milpitas has an OPEN waiting list for the BMR program. Please note- waiting time varies.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Will I be notified by the City when my application has been received?

A: The City will review your application for income eligibility or ineligibility. If qualified you will receive a letter of the income level and number of household members you qualified within two (2) weeks.

Q: What is calculated towards my income?

A: Please refer to the memo in the application.  We include the gross income of all household members including SSI, temporary/part-time jobs, Armed Forces stipend/earned income, etc. 

Q: Who should be included on the application?

A: All person(s) that would be living in the home at least 50% of the time should be included on the application. You cannot have a co-signer. 

Q: How long will it take for a BMR unit to become available?

A: The waiting time for an available BMR home varies.  We cannot predict when current owners are ready to sell.

Q: How do I apply for a preference?

A: As indicated in the application, you must submit verification documentation that confirms your selected preference.  


Q: What if our income changes?

A: We calculate the gross income by combining income of adults over 18 years and older at time of application.  However, before the purchase of a BMR home the City may ask for updated income materials to confirm income eligibility.


Q: What if our address or contact information changes?

A: If you move or change your contact preferences, it is very important that you update this information with us as soon as possible. You may be contacted by mail or email regarding BMR Program updates. Failure to respond may result in your removal from the waiting list.


Q: What if the home offered is too small?

A: The BMR housing stock only has 1, 2, or 3 bedroom homes available.  If you are offered a home that is not suitable for your preferences, you may choose to decline the offer and remain on the waiting list.


Q: Do I need to attend a first-time home buyer course?

A: Yes, you will need to submit a copy of Project Sentinel’s Certificate of Completion of the First-Time Home buyer course within two weeks of submitting a purchase agreement on a home. You do not need to complete the course in order to submit an application for the BMR Program.

Q: Does the City complete a credit check?

A: No, we do not. 

For any questions or concerns, please contact: Sara Court, Housing Planner / 408-586-3269