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- About NHLP
HUD Activates Emergency Home Loan Program as of April 4, 2011
The EHLP program will be administered by NeighborWorks and its affiliate network of home counseling agencies. They are required to do outreach to ensure that all single family homeowners (1-4 units) in each state are aware of the program and have a way to apply for assistance. Due to the small number of homeowners that will be assisted under the program, homeowners in need of assistance should contact a NeighborWorks affiliated counseling agency as soon as possible to receive guidance on the information that they need to compile in order to submit an application for assistance on or after April 4. NeighborWorks affiliated counseling agencies can be located at http://www.findaforeclosurecounselor.org/network/nfmc_lookup/.
To qualify for EHLP assistance, a homeowner must be at least three payments delinquent and must have had at least a 15% reduction in income due to involuntary loss of a job, underemployment, or medical circumstances leading to reduced income. The homeowner and lender must certify that the loan is in default and that foreclosure is imminent.
The homeowner must have a reasonable prospect of being able to resume repayment within two years. This is met if the borrower’s debt-to-income ratio, based on pre-event income, is less than 55% of total gross monthly income.
During the period of assistance, the assisted homeowner must pay 31% of income, or a minimum of $25, per month towards the mortgage, taxes and insurance.
Termination of Assistance
Assistance on behalf of homeowners will be terminated upon the expiration of 24 months or the expenditure of $50,000, whichever occurs first. Assistance will also be terminated if the homeowner defaults on the first mortgage payments, the homeowner fails to report changes in employment within 15 days, the homeowner’s income increases to 85% or more of the pre-event income, or the homeowner sells or refinances the property.
Repayment of Assistance to HUD
Assisted homeowners will be required to execute a promissory note and deed of trust or mortgage in favor of HUD for the amount of assistance that they have received. The promissory note will not carry any interest and will be due and payable in full five or more years after execution. Homeowners who remain current on their first mortgage loan after assistance is terminated will have 20% of the loan forgiven at the end of each year. Thus, homeowners who remain current on their first mortgage for five years will not owe HUD anything.
HUD is expected to publish a handbook setting out more detailed guidelines for the program on or before April 4, 2011. The handbook is expected to also include a process by which homeowners who are denied assistance can appeal the adverse decision.
It is expected that NeighborWorks will publish additional information on the program on its website on or before April 4, 2011.