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How to Buy a Dollar House

How to Buy a Dollar House

Have you heard about the Dollar Homes program? This program is the easiest way to find abandoned homes for sale. All the homes in the Dollar Homes program are previous FHA-loan foreclosures that are empty and just waiting for someone to fix them up.

Looking for other low income home buyer options? Click here!

What is the FHA?

The Federal Housing Administration is part of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). It’s also the only government agency that is entirely self-funded and operates without any expense to taxpayers!

The FHA provides mortgage guarantees for many low income home buyers. When those buyers fail to make their payments, the banks foreclose on the home. The buyers lose their home and the FHA acquires the foreclosed home.

Some of these homes are then listed on the Dollar Homes website, where the public can purchase the abandoned homes for sale at rock bottom prices.

What are Dollar Homes?

According to the HUD website, the Dollar Homes initiative was designed to help local governments promote home ownership opportunities for low income families. The homes were intended to be sold for literally $1 each.

Thousands of homes have been sold through this website for just $1 each. However, at the time of this writing, the two “Dollar Homes” listed on the site were listed for $5,950 and $10,447, respectively.

These homes are intended to be purchased by local governments or non-profit organizations who will renovate the home for resale. However, the HUD website indicates that you can make an offer on the home through a HUD-approved broker.

Should I consider abandoned homes for sale?

There are some obvious drawbacks involved in purchasing an abandoned home for sale. Although a “Dollar Home” certainly sounds enticing and the homes are certainly sold for very low prices, there is a serious amount of rehabilitation involved before the home will be a safe, healthy, livable residence.

If you are going to purchase abandoned homes for sale, you need to have funds or the ability to obtain financing for repairs. You may need to take out a loan in order to make your new home livable. Granted, you’ll still be saving money in many cases… but you might end up spending far more than you expected. This is especially true when you consider paying for housing while you’re rehabilitating the home you’ve purchased.

To be completely honest, I do not recommend this program to low income home buyers and I would encourage you to check out this list of alternative low income home buyer programs. 

How do I buy a Dollar Home?

When you click on the First Time Bidder button the HUD Homes website, you will be instructed to find a registered HUD broker to help you make a bid. However, the site offers a helpful search engine that can help you find a qualifying broker.

Find more resources for low income homebuyers here!

Nicole leads the Low Income Relief team with over 20 years of professional research and writing experience. Nicole started Low Income Relief after a personal experience with poverty. When her husband was medically discharged from the US Army, their family experienced tremendous financial hardship. Nicole was able to gather help from multiple community agencies and move into a nearby low income housing unit in just two weeks! Since then, Nicole has been dedicated to helping low income families in crisis. She regularly spends hundreds of hours combing through countless resources to make sure that Low Income Relief has the most comprehensive and complete resource directories on the internet today. Prior to starting Low Income Relief, Nicole worked as a novelist, journalist, ghostwriter and content creator. Her work has been featured in various print and online publications, including USA Today, eHow, Livestrong, Legal Beagle, The Daily Herald, The Chronicle and more.

Paul Andrew Anderson

Friday 29th of May 2020

It is too bad this is not for real. Your site says: Thousands of homes have been sold through this website for just $1 each. Not even close! Right now, I have gone thru 28 States so far, and not one home is for sale for a $1. None! I doubt if any US State has any such listings, much less thousands. Find 5 homes for a dollar in all of the USA and place a direct link to it here.


Saturday 26th of June 2021

They give homes away for free in Gary Indiana, a few areas in Kentucky and in Kansas. However, they are in areas you probably would not want to live in.

Tig Paul

Thursday 16th of May 2019

All that I see is two comments. No article. Bummer

Riley Thomson

Thursday 16th of May 2019

Tig, Hmmm... That's weird. I just checked and the page seems to be loading fine. You should try again and see if it's working now. Click the link: How to Buy a Dollar House. If it's still not working, will you send us a screenshot so we can look into it. Thanks. -Riley

Robin Stover

Sunday 21st of April 2019

Trying to find a place that's abandoned in Staunton or Augusta county VA.that can be bought for back taxes or under the 1.00 program.I have the ability to fix it and access to the things I would need I just don't have enough money to just rent or buy a place and I don't know how to go about this.If you could help me by guiding me to what I need to do it would so greatly be appreciated.Looking for a place in Staunton or Augusta Co.Va.

Riley Thomson

Monday 22nd of April 2019

Robin, This is everything we have for buying a home with low income. Or you could try for more information in your area. I hope this helps. -Riley