Arizona’s Housing Assistance Program Helps Homeowners Behind on Their Mortgages and Other Related Bills
Arizona homeowners facing financial difficulties due to Covid-19 can use funds from the Arizona Homeowner Assistance Program (HAF). The program, funded by the American Rescue Plan of 2021 is administered by the Arizona Department of Housing. Many Arizona families have already received assistance since its opening in January, but there are still millions left. According to Homeowner Assistance Fund Dashboard, so far there are 6021 submitted applications, out of which 2535 have been already approved. Half of the funds have gone to Maricopa County.
“We had about $197 million to disperse to Arizona families who are behind in their mortgages,” said Tom Simplot, the state’s housing director. “If someone finds themselves in a position of being behind in their mortgage, or their utilities, their HOA, their property taxes that’s what this program is for,” he added.
According to the Arizona Department of Housing’s term sheet: “Arizona has over 33,000 mortgages currently in forbearance and over 83,000 mortgages in delinquency. Both forbearances and delinquencies are significantly greater among rural, low-income, and high minority communities”.
The Arizona Homeowner Assistance Fund provides up to $25,000.00 to qualified homeowners. These amounts are sufficient to pay for a year’s worth of past-due mortgage, utilities such as gas, water, home energy, internet, insurance (including homeowner’s insurance, flood insurance, and mortgage insurance), and tax expenses. These funds can also be used to offset future mortgage payments for COVID-19-affected households.
To be eligible, there are certain criteria that must be met by both the homeowner and the property. The applicant must have faced financial hardship as a result of Covid-19 before January 2020. These hardships include losing your job, reduction of income, and increased costs due to the care of a Covid-19 patient. Their income must be at or below 150% of the Area Median Income. For more information on Area Median Income for Arizona, click here. The property must serve as their primary residence.
For applying, visit the Arizona Homeowner Assistance Program’s official site. The document necessary when applying are a government-issued ID, deed or proof of ownership, income documents, and mortgage documents. Once an application is approved, the funds will not be sent directly to applicants, but to their mortgage servicers or utility providers.