Need a couple of thousand dollars to help you get into that "starter home" you've been saving for?

The West Valley City Housing Authority may be able to help you out with the money.Down-payment assistance is available to first-time homebuyers, and it can provide grants or loans between $1,000 and $5,000 for persons who qualify under the city's Home Ownership Program.

Now in its seventh year, the program has helped out 200 buyers and can provide assistance in the purchase of conventional homes, condominiums and town homes.

Mobile homes are not eligible under the program, said Landon Halverson, a neighborhood housing specialist for the agency.

Before prospective buyers start house-hunting or seek financing, they should contact the housing authority and submit an application along with the required verifications.

That requires a $50 deposit, which is refundable upon completing the program.

Qualified applicants also must undergo pre-purchase counseling before they become eligible for the assistance program and start shopping for homes.

"Depending on where in West Valley City they choose to buy, they can receive $1,000 to $5,000 in assistance that can be used toward the down payment or closing costs," said Halverson.

The housing authority also offers rehabilitation loans for existing and mobile homes as well as a rental assistance program.

Information is available by phoning 963-3320.