North Carolina Offers Financial Assistance for Renters and Homeowners
Eligible renters and homeowners in North Carolina can get financial assistance through the NC Homeowner Assistance Fund and the Orange County Emergency Housing Assistance program.
“If we’re going to be a healthy, vibrant Orange County, then we have to make sure that our people have safe, secure housing and that their needs are met,” Board of County Commissioners Chairperson Renee Price said.
The NC Homeowner Assistance Fund was established through the American Rescue Plan Act, to provide direct assistance and stimulate the US economy as it recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. The NC Housing Finance Agency is operating the program through funding provided by the NC Pandemic Recovery Office. The North Carolina Housing Finance Agency is a self-supporting public agency that finances affordable housing opportunities for North Carolinians whose needs are not met by the market. The fund provides assistance to prevent mortgage delinquencies, displacements and foreclosures for homeowners who have experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19. These hardships include loss of employment, reduction in household income, or significant COVID-related expenses (medical bills, personal protective equipment, child care costs, equipment or internet costs to enable online work/schooling, etc.). Assistance is available for up to $40,000.00 per household as long as funding is available. This help is available for single-family homes, townhouses, condominiums, duplexes, mobile and manufactured housing. The property must be the applicant’s principal residence and located in North Carolina. Applications are available through the Application Portal or by contacting the call center at 1-855-MY-NCHAF (1-855-696-2423).
“Ensuring that families have stable housing has always been our mission, and that has become even more critical during this ongoing public health crisis,” Scott Farmer, executive director of the Housing Finance Agency, said in a Jan. 31 press release.
The Orange County Emergency Housing program is a partnership between Orange County and the towns of Chapel Hill, Carrboro, and Hillsborough. The Emergency Housing Assistance fund was created under the Risk Mitigation and Housing Displacement Fund to help Orange County residents with low incomes prevent eviction and homelessness and secure and maintain stable housing. It is available to residents with a household income at or below 30% of the area median income (AMI), who have an urgent need for housing assistance that is related to the COVID-19 pandemic, and do not have adequate resources to cover the cost of their housing need. Funds from this program can be used to cover rent, mortgage and utility payments, security deposits, application fees, and other emergency housing-related expenses.
“We are really happy that that groundwork was laid because we saw this huge increase in the demand for housing assistance,” Housing and Community Development Director Corey Root said. “Since the start of the pandemic, we’ve issued almost $10 million in rent and utility assistance.”