Many people rely on housing assistance to help with their situation. However, many Americans may not even realize that they qualify for available assistance opportunities! That is why it is important to make sure you know what programs are out there to see which may be a good fit for whatever situation you’re in.
Understanding Government Assistance
There are assistance options at a local, state, and federal level. This article is going to specifically highlight housing assistance opportunities from a federal level. However, that doesn’t mean you should only consider federal assistance! Instead, you should do research on all available options. You may not find any federal programs that can help, but state and local assistance options could be a different story!
There are plenty of federal housing assistance options that you can consider. Popular opportunities include:
- Continuum of Care (Coc) Homeless Assistance Program
- Good Neighbor Next Door Program
- Hope for Homeowners (H4H)
- Housing Choice Voucher Program
- Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA)
- HUD Homes for Sale
- Indian Home Loan Guarantee Program
- Public Housing
Continuum of Care (CoC) Homeless Assistance Program
Are you dealing with or facing homelessness? There is an assistance option that may be able to help. Continuum of Care (CoC) is a program that aims to aid individuals and families who are dealing with homelessness. They can assist homeless individuals by helping those in need move into either transitional or permanent housing. If you are interested in qualifying for this program opportunity you will either need to be already homeless or be at risk of losing your housing. For more details you can review information online!
Good Neighbor Next Door Program
Everyone loves a good neighbor. That is why this program focuses on providing assistance opportunities to eligible individuals like firefighters, EMTs, teachers, or law enforcement officers who want to buy a home. It is important to note that the home needs to be within a United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) specified revitalization area. If an eligible individual chooses this program, then they may be able to get a 50% discount off of the listing price of an available house from HUD’s inventory.
This type of assistance comes with guidelines. For example, the recipient of this program will be required to reside in the residence for at least 3 years and this must be the only residence of the recipient. For more information about this program you should visit the HUD website.
Hope for Homeowners (H4H)
If you are at risk of losing your home due to default or foreclosure, there is hope (literally). The Hope for Homeowners program provides eligible individuals who struggle with their existing mortgage the opportunity to refinance into an affordable mortgage. The best part? Participation for this program is voluntary so long as both the borrower and the lender agree to take part (that’s why choosing the right lender is important!).
In order to determine whether or not this program is an option for you, you will need to contact your lender to figure out your eligibility status. Generally, you may be qualified if any of these factors apply:
- The property is your primary residence
- You have no ownership interest in additional housing properties like a second home
- You struggle with your existing mortgage
- The total monthly mortgage payments you have are more than 31% of your gross income every month
- You have not been convicted of fraud within the past decade.
Housing Choice Voucher Program
Also referred to as Section 8, this housing program can provide eligible low-income individuals the opportunity to obtain affordable housing. In this program, recipients will receive a housing voucher that can go towards covering housing costs. There are a variety of properties that accept these vouchers as a form of payment. However, it is important to note that there is no legal obligation for properties to accept these vouchers. That means that you are limited in your options, but you could still live in a variety of different types of homes like a single-family home, townhome, apartment, etc.
Your local Public Housing Authority (PHA) will provide you the vouchers. Once you receive these vouchers, and find a property you want to live in, you still have another step. You need to make sure that the property you are interested in is approved by your local PHA. From there, the PHA will pay the landlord directly on behalf of the recipient. The recipient is responsible for any difference leftover. This is a popular program so you may experience long wait times to actually receive this assistance.
Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA)
Individuals that live with HIV or AIDS can deal with a lot of hardship in life. That is why this program aims to help individuals living with this disease. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) will provide grant funds to localities, states, and nonprofit organizations to benefit eligible individuals. In fact, some assistance may extend past housing and provide help with chemical dependency treatment, mental health treatment, nutritional services, job training, and more. In order to qualify for this program you will need to meet your area’s low-income requirements and have been diagnosed with either HIV or AIDS (amongst other eligibility requirements).
HUD Homes for Sale
Now while this may not be a traditional housing assistance program, it is still a form of federal housing assistance. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has residential properties in their inventory. These properties come from foreclosure on Federal Housing Administration (FHA)-insured mortgages. Once these insured properties go into foreclosure, HUD becomes the property owner. As a way to recover from the loss on the foreclosure, they offer these properties at a reduced rate.
You may be eligible for this assistance option if you have the cash or are able to qualify for a loan. Those that are purchasing properties as a primary residence will be offered these properties first. After that, unsold properties are available to all buyers!
Indian Home Loan Guarantee Program
Native Americans, Tribes, Tribally Designated Housing Entities (TDHEs), and Indian Housing Authorities are able to receive assistance from this loan program. This program aims to provide the chance of homeownership to eligible recipients through guaranteed mortgage loan programs. These loan programs are available through private financial institutions and may be able to help you.
The goal of public housing is to provide eligible low-income families and individuals the chance of decent and safe rental housing. There are a bunch of different types of public housing options from single-family homes to high rise apartments. In order to qualify you will need to meet eligibility requirements set by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Factors like income level, citizenship status, and more will impact eligibility.
There are plenty of housing assistance opportunities available from a federal level. These are just to name a few. The best part is the fact that these applications are free which means it doesn’t hurt to submit an application! However, if you don’t think any of these programs are a good fit for your situation, there are still other opportunities that you can consider. You will want to review both local and state opportunities to see if there are any other options that can help the situation you are dealing with.