If you are a single mother in need of financial assistance, you may be interested in the many housing assistance for single mothers available to you. Whether you are a homeowner who is currently suffering financially, or a single mom looking for low income rental housing, we’ve got your list of housing assistance resources.
The following programs are designed to assist you in renting, purchasing or keeping a home that is affordable, safe, and appropriate for yourself and your children.
Hope for Homeowners
Are you having a difficult time making timely payments on your home? Are you afraid that you will default on your home loan? Don’t worry, you are not alone.
In 2008, when the mortgage crisis became extremely apparent, the US government took action to help stabilize the housing market. On October 3, 2008, the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act was written and established to assist single mothers and struggling homeowners.
A portion of this law is known as the Hope for Homeowners Act, which is designed to help homeowners avoid foreclosure and prevent them from defaulting on their loans.
In order to qualify for this type of assistance, you must meet the following criteria:
- Your original mortgage must have been established before January 1, 2008.
- Your original mortgage contains true information about your employment and income.
- You have never been convicted of fraud.
- You do not have multiple loans for your home or homes.
- You did not purposely default on your original loan.
While single mothers who qualify for Hope for Homeowners are able to escape foreclosure through refinancing, there is a catch to this type of assistance called equity sharing.
Equity, or the difference between the value of your home and the total amount of your original loan, will be split with the government while you are refinancing.
The amount of equity the government receives will depend on when you decide to refinance or sell your home. If you sell your home during the first year, the government will receive all of the equity in your home.
For each year after that, the government receives a certain predetermined percentage. For instance, if you sell your home during the second year, the government will receive 90% of the equity, during the third, they receive 80%, and so on until year five, when the equity is split 50/50.
For further information about this program, make sure you visit http://www.fha.com/hope_for_homeowners.cfm
Low Income Housing
Single mothers who are looking to rent or purchase safe and affordable housing for their families can take advantage of several government assistance programs.
- Housing Choice Vouchers Program – The Housing Choice Vouchers Program, also known as the PHA vouchers program, provides single mothers and low income families with housing choice vouchers to help pay for rent or even to purchase a home.
The vouchers are provided by the individual’s local public housing agency (PHA), which is funded by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
The voucher allows the public housing agency to pay a certain amount of the rent to the landlord each month. If the total rent is not covered by the housing voucher, the renter will be responsible for coming up with the difference.
Some single mothers and low income families may be able to purchase a home with these vouchers as well, under certain circumstances.
- Home Program – HUD also offers a program called the HOME program. Unlike the Housing Choice Vouchers Program, federal funding established for this program are given to the state and local government. The government can then take the funds and distribute them to single mothers and low income families through loan guarantees, direct loans, grants, rental assistance, security deposit assistance, and credit enhancement.
- Shelter Plus Care Program – Single mothers who are homeless and have disabilities can take part in the Shelter Plus Care Program, which is also offered through HUD. This program provides housing, support, and rehabilitation programs to individuals who are homeless and disabled, especially those who are suffering from mental illnesses, long-term problems such as drug or alcohol abuse, or AIDS.
According to HUD, located at www.hud.gov, almost 12 million renters pay more than 50 percent of their income on the cost of housing, and those who pay even 30 percent of their annual income may have difficulty affording necessary costs like medical care, clothing, transportation, and even food.
Does this sound like you? HUD may be able to help. With a wide variety of programs, some mentioned already above, HUD is able to help low income families and single mothers afford decent housing.
Here are a few additional programs that HUD offers to help families afford the housing they need:
- Homeownership Zone – This program was designed in an effort to increase the amount of housing in an area. It provides states and local governments with the funds to purchase unused and rundown properties so they can be used for new single family homes that are close to jobs, public transportation, and provide the safety of neighborhood boundaries.
- SHOP – The shop program provides funds for non-profit organizations. With this program, the non-profits are able to purchase homes and properties to develop them for low-income housing.
If you are a single mother who is unable to afford proper housing for your family, or you are afraid you will default on your loan, consider one of these options offered by the federal government.