Emergency Rescue Mortgage Assistance in New Jersey: Are You Eligible?
The State of New Jersey came in second in foreclosure filings in the first 6 months of 2022 according to an analysis from real estate data curator ATTOM. According to this report, 0.24% of all housing units are facing foreclosure which is double the nation’s average of 0.12%. These numbers are the reason almost all States developed their own Homeowner Assistance Programs using funds from the American Rescue Plan of 2021.
The State of New Jersey launched the Emergency Rescue Mortgage Assistance (ERMA) to help families facing financial hardship as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. This program provides up to $35,000.00 to cover delinquent mortgage payments, property taxes, municipal or tax liens, and other housing-related expenses. ERMA also provides free counseling services, expert guidance, and collaboration with personal loan servicers.
“Working families have faced unprecedented burdens over the last two years. If you are struggling to pay your mortgage or other homeowner-associated obligations, the ERMA program can help you get back on your feet,” said Lt. Governor Oliver, who serves as Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs and Chair of the NJHMFA board. “We encourage all eligible homeowners to apply for assistance. If you are unsure if you’re eligible, you should call 855-647-7700 to be put in touch with a housing counselor who can help guide you through the process and understand your options.”
Applicants and their properties must fulfill specific qualifying standards in order to be eligible. Homeowners must be residents of New Jersey and have financial hardship attributable to COVID-19 that began after January 20, 2020. A one-to-four unit property, consisting of a detached house, a condominium unit, or a manufactured home on a foundation permanently attached to real property, must be owned and occupied by the applicant as their primary residence. These exclude second residences and investment properties. Their annual salary must be less than 150 percent of the area median income (AMI).
“The ERMA program is designed to support as many vulnerable homeowners as possible in a meaningful and comprehensive way. This robust program reflects the tireless work of staff, legislators, advocates, and federal partners over the past months to identify means to protect those in need across our State. We know that NJHMFA and our housing counselor partners are poised to make a real difference in the lives of thousands of New Jersey families through this important work.” said NJHMFA Executive Director Melanie R. Walter.
If you are in need of such assistance, visit the Application Portal to apply (available in many languages). For more information, call (855) 647-7700 or email the ERMA team at [email protected]. From this list of housing counselors, applicants can also contact a counseling agency that has been approved by HUD on their own.