BERKELEY (CBS SF) — The city of Berkeley has opened a lottery for low-income, first-time homebuyers to apply to buy one of six newly built condominiums created through the city’s affordable housing strategy, the city said Wednesday.

There are five one-bedroom units that cost between $162,000-$168,000 depending on unit size. One three-bedroom unit will be sold for $230,000. For all units, monthly Homeowners Association dues will range from $443-$542.

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The condos are meant for households making less than $79,360 (for the one-bedroom units) and $99,120 (for the three-bedroom) per year. For the three-bedroom unit, a minimum of four people are required to live there.

The policy is known as inclusionary and below market rate (BMR) housing due to the high cost of land and construction. The city says it serves as “a critical way to increase affordable housing in Berkeley.”

The city’s policy requires that 20% of all new ownership/condominium project units be reserved for low-income households.

“Given the extreme housing crisis facing the entire Bay Area, we’re looking for as many ways as possible to increase affordable housing in Berkeley,” said Berkeley City Manager Dee Williams-Ridley. “We’re excited that this opportunity also increases the pool of home ownership.”

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You can apply for the lottery and read more about the program on Bloom Berkeley’s website. Bloom Berkeley is the property owner.

The deadline to apply is Thursday, Feb. 6 at 5 p.m. The city made it clear that being placed in the lottery requires applicants to compile or submit various documents, including a pre-approval latter containing a maximum loan amount from a lender.

Preference will be given to applicants who live or work in Berkeley.

There are open houses being held at the Bloom Berkeley Sales Gallery on San Pablo Avenue for people who want to see the units on the following dates:

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  • Friday, Jan. 24 from 3-5 p.m.
  • Friday, Jan. 31 from 3-5 p.m.

The lottery drawing will be on Monday, Feb. 10.