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.

2022 Department of Housing and Community Development(HCD) Income Limits

Lottery System

The City of Milpitas will be transferring the available unit selection method from a waiting list to a lottery system. What does this mean for your current application? Nothing. If you have submitted an application, we will continue to contact you as units become available. When a unit becomes available, we will notify you about the lottery and the process to enter the lottery.


While every applicant must meet the City’s basic eligibility requirements, the City of Milpitas gives some Households a lottery preference that increase the chance that they will be offered an affordable unit.

The City endeavors to make housing available for Milpitas residents, individuals who work in Milpitas, Former Milpitas residents who have been displaced, and families with children enrolled in the McKinney Vento Program at the Milpitas Unified School District (MUSD):

  • To qualify as “Employed within the boundaries of the City of Milpitas,” the person shall have been employed within the City of Milpitas for at least six months.
  • To qualify as a “Milpitas resident,” the person shall have been a resident of the City of Milpitas for at least a one-year period prior to the eligibility determination.

Proof will be required for the above preferences – for example, a copy of the applicant’s utility bills indicating residence in Milpitas and/or lease agreement, and employment verification. Preferences must be current and apply to at least one person who will be living in the household at least 50% of the time.

The following procedure describes the steps in assigning the number of lottery tickets to applicants:

  1. Each applicant receives one lottery ticket as a baseline for submitting their application.
  2. Each preference category is assigned a number of additional tickets based on the weighting for that preference category.
  3. Each applicant identifies which preferences apply to their household. These preferences are then used to determine how many additional lottery tickets each household will receive. The intent of the weighted number of tickets is to prioritize the selection of a household that meets the most of the City Council’s priorities.
Applicants Number of Lottery Tickets
All applicants Receive 1 lottery ticket
Milpitas residents Receive 5 additional lottery tickets
Former Milpitas residents who have been displaced Receive 3 additional lottery tickets
Households with children enrolled in the Milpitas Unified School District (MUSD) that have inadequate housing as defined in the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act Receive 3 additional lottery tickets
Applicants employed within the boundaries of the City of Milpitas Receive 1 additional lottery ticket

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. All you need to do is fill out the form at the top of this webpage.

2. As units become available for purchase, you will be notified for the opportunity to enter into a lottery to be selected to purchase a below market unit.

3. Please be sure to update your contact information with the City so you can be informed as to our available units.

Please note – waiting time varies. See FAQs for more information.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Will I be notified by the City when my web form submission has been received?

A: You should receive an email from the City as soon as you submit. If you did not receive an email, please check your spam/junk folder. If you still did not receive an email confirming you’ve been added to the waiting list, please contact housing@milpitas.gov

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

A: The City does not control when an owner decides to sell. As such, the waiting time for an available BMR home can vary. By completing the form above, you agree to receive notifications from the City as to when an opportunity to purchase a unit becomes available.

Q: How do I apply for a preference?

A: As indicated in the web form, you must select the preference(s) you believe apply to you. You will be required to demonstrate proof these preferences apply to you prior to being selected for purchase.

Q: What if our address or contact information changes?

A: The City will be contacting you via email. If your email address changes during the time you are on the waiting list, it is very important that you update this information with us as soon as possible.  

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 win the random lottery selection and are offered a home that is not suitable for your preferences, you may choose to decline the opportunity to purchase. Just note, while you are not removed from the list if you decline to purchase, you may not be selected again due to the random nature of the lottery system.

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 be on the BMR Program interest list.

Q: Does the City complete a credit check?

A: No, we do not.

For any questions or concerns, please contact the Housing Division:

Housing@milpitas.gov / 408-586-3222