HOMEOWNERS struggling to pay their mortgage and other bills due to Covid can still get help thanks to federal funds.
The American Rescue Plan Act set aside stimulus money for states to help people at risk of losing their homes.
This is known as the Homeowner Assistance Fund (HAF), which provides nearly $10billion for states and other US territories.
All states and eligible territories have applied for the funding, and most of them have now set up their own programs.
The others have so far set up pilot programs, or remain in the process to do so, according to the National Council of State Housing Agencies (NCSHA).
If you get accepted, the funds can be used for mortgage payments, homeowner’s insurance, utility payments, and more.
Who is eligible to get help?
The fund is available for those who've experienced financial hardship after the pandemic initially hit the US.
You may be eligible if you experienced financial difficulties after January 21, 2020, as well as hardship that began before this date but continued after.
To qualify, incomes must be 150% or less of the area median income or 100% of the median income for the US, whichever is bigger.
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Plus, the homeowner’s mortgage balance must be less than $548,250.
How much you can get varies between states, but California is currently offering the highest maximum at $80,000 per household.
HAF programs in each state and territory
HAF program open:
- Alaska - Applications closed on April 4.
- Hawaii - Temporarily closed applications on March 4.
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Carolina
- Puerto Rico
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
Pilot program running:
- District of Columbia
Preliminary information available:
- North Dakota
To apply, check your state's website and follow the instructions.
If and when your application is approved, the funds are typically sent directly to your mortgage lender and other providers.
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