Consumer Alert: Millions of dollars in financial assistance is still available to District homeowners for mortgages and other housing costs, including 7,000+ DC households at risk of foreclosure
Earlier this year, the Department of Housing & Community Development (DHCD) launched the DC Homeowner Assistance Fund (HAF). If you own a home in the District and you are behind on your mortgage or other housing costs, you may qualify for free financial assistance. Especially during the pandemic, many residents across the District struggled to make their mortgage payments or cover other housing costs. There are still more than 7,000 DC households who are at imminent risk of foreclosure. This program aims to help individuals and families get needed support to keep a roof over their heads.
DC received $50 million in federal dollars for HAF, and funding still is available.
- If you applied for HAF funds before September 30, you will have special protection that prevents a foreclosure on your home until your application is decided and any payment is made.
- If you are applying for HAF funds after September 30, the program remains open. You can still apply to receive money from HAF to cover housing costs and avoid foreclosure, but the moratorium on preventing foreclosures no longer exists.
We also know there many residents who started to fill out applications but never completed them. Please finish them so you can try to access these funds. See below for some legal aid organizations that can help you fill out the application.
Am I eligible for HAF?
- You may qualify if:
- You are a District homeowner,
- You have fallen behind on mortgage, property charges, or utility/internet payments,
- Your household is at or below a certain income limit,
- You have experienced a COVID-19 related hardship — a decrease in income or increase in expenses during the pandemic, and
- Your home loan does not exceed a certain limit.
- The income limits depend on the size of your household. For a 3-person household, your income generally must fall below $128,100 annually; some 3-person households can qualify with income as high as $192,150 annually.
What kind of assistance can I receive?
- Approved homeowners can get up to $100,000 for past-due mortgage payments, condo or HOA fees, co-op fees, homeowners insurance charges, property taxes, or utilities.
- Homeowners who cannot afford to make their regular payments can also get up to 3 months of forward-paying assistance up to a cap of $18,000.
How does it work?
- Funds are paid directly to the mortgage company or other association or company to which you owe money for property related expenses.
- HAF funds are paid as a grant. They do not have to be paid back, and they do not restrict your future ability to sell.
How do I apply?
- You can find more information, see if you qualify, and apply at haf.dc.gov.
- You will create a profile, answer a pre-screening questionnaire, and complete your application online. Applications are only accepted online through this site.Where can I go for more information or to get help?
- For more information or questions about HAF, you can visit the HAF website at haf.dc.gov, call HAF at (202) 540-7407, or email HAF at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Housing counselors can help you fill out a HAF application. You can find a full list of available housing counselors at haf.dc.gov/page/required-documents-resources.
- If you are a low-income homeowner and want to apply for free legal services to help with a foreclosure problem, you can contact Legal Aid DC at (202) 628-1161 or Legal Counsel for the Elderly (age 60+) at (202) 434-2120.