Federal aid available for those facing home foreclosure
More than $100 million in foreclosure aid is available for Pennsylvania through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) Emergency Homeowners' Loan Program (EHLP).
"In Pennsylvania, foreclosures are up, and experts predict that the foreclosure rate will continue at an elevated level at least through 2011," said Brian A. Hudson Sr ., executive director and CEO, PHFA. "In order to address this challenge, it's vital that we connect homeowners with available resources that can help them stave off foreclosure and stay in their homes. This not only promotes the well-being of our families, but it also helps communities remain stable and strong."
EHLP funds will be available to qualified homeowners who are delinquent on their mortgages and are in danger of foreclosure due to the loss of a job, an involuntary reduction in work hours, or a medical issue. Applications for the program will be accepted until September 30, 2011.
Homeowners may be eligible for a loan of up to $50,000 or 24 months of mortgage payment assistance if they:
• Have a loss of at least 15 percent of income;
• Have missed at least three mortgage payments or received a foreclosure notice due to job loss, income reduction and/or illness;
• Are likely to be able to start making payments again within two years;
• Are at or below 120 percent of area median income;
• Are applying for help with a mortgage on their primary residence, which is a 1- to 4-unit residence or condominium unit.
United Way of Allegheny County is also announcing the launch of Pennsylvania 2-1-1 Southwest – a free helpline that connects people with social, health and government services. Residents interested in learning more about EHLP qualifications and how to receive EHLP funding should call 2-1-1 for more information.
"Data indicates that last year, less than 26 percent of Allegheny County residents facing foreclosure reached out for assistance," said Julie DeSeyn, director, Pennsylvania 2-1-1 Southwest. "Too often, this is simply because they don't know who to call for help.United Way is excited to announce the launch of PA 2-1-1 Southwest, to connect callers with the resources and services they need."
As part of its outreach in local communities, on July 12 United Way of Allegheny County will be hosting a meeting to prepare local community leaders to spread the word about the availability of EHLP funding, and to encourage residents facing foreclosure to reach out for help as early as possible.