Applications and waitlist for the 1st round are closed.

The second round of applications will re-open on July 1, 2023.

Grant Details

The Minnesota Down Payment Assistance Grant offers up to $15,000 for qualified farmers purchasing their first farm. The grant program is administered by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture Rural Finance Authority (RFA) as part of its mission to develop the state’s agricultural resources.

More information about the next round of funding will be available in mid to late May. We are waiting for program updates to be finalized in the legislative session.

Round 2 Information Session

MDA will be hosting a Zoom call to review the grant program, explain changes for the next round of funding, and hear your questions and comments. A recording of the call will be available and posted on this webpage.

June 14, 2:30-3:30 p.m. 

Zoom Meeting ID: 890 1726 5759


Call In: +1 312 626 6799 US

Live interpretation will be available by request. Please contact, 651-895-0315 at MDA’s Emerging Farmers Office by June 5 to request translation.


Am I Eligible?

  • Individual (LLCs, partnerships, etc. must apply as individual)
  • Minnesota resident
  • Earn less than $250,000 annually in gross agricultural sales
  • Applicants and their spouses have never owned a farm
  • Will provide the majority of labor and management on the farm
  • Will farm the land for at least 5 years
  • In good standing with the State of Minnesota
  • Have not been convicted of a crime related to a state grant agreement

Eligible Purchases

  • Farmland or other agricultural real estate (hog barn, commercial greenhouse, etc.)
  • Within the borders of Minnesota
  • Must close on purchase after application approval and within designated timeframe. This grant cannot be applied retroactively toward purchases that have already closed.

Apply 2 Ways

  1. Complete the online Minnesota Down Payment Assistance Grant application. No pre-registration or account is required.
  2. Email a completed PDF application to PDF application will be available in the Forms + Resources box at the top of this page.

Mailable application may also be requested. See Request for Applications document in Forms + Resources box for more details and instructions.

What Else?

The Minnesota Legislature appropriated $500,000 for the first round of Down Payment Assistance grant funding, which took place from January to June 2023. The state has also funded $750,000 each for a second and third round of funding, which will begin July 2023 and July 2024 respectively.


Past Webinars

In December 2022, RFA hosted two informational webinars to present an overview of Round 1 of the Down Payment Assistance Grant program and a Q&A session with perspective applicants. A recording is available with the link below.

December 15 Webinar