In early 2021, President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act into law. This law created a Homeowner Assistance Fund, a federal program, to give around $10 billion to the states to help households that are behind on their mortgages and other housing expenses due to COVID-19.
Eligible homeowners who've experienced a financial hardship because of the pandemic can get a piece of the approximately $168 million allocated to the state—up to $35,000 per household—from Indiana's Homeowner Assistance Fund program. This program uses federal money to help homeowners make mortgage payments and pay other escrowed home-related costs, like homeowners' association fees and property taxes.
Again, Indiana's Homeowner Assistance Fund program offers up to $35,000 per household. This money can go toward paying:
You can get up to six months of monthly mortgage payments under the monthly assistance program.
Program money can also pay homeowners' association fees, property owners' association fees, condo owners' association fees, county taxes, and homeowners' insurance.
To qualify for relief from this program, you must have suffered a financial hardship (a material reduction in income or an increase in living expenses) after January 21, 2020, because of the coronavirus pandemic. In addition, you have to meet some other guidelines:
To find out if you're potentially eligible, take this prescreening quiz.
Payments from the program go directly to the loan servicer or other approved entity, not to homeowners.
Assistance is structured as a five-year, forgivable loan that a junior lien on the property secures. The first 20% is forgiven 12 months after the loan closes. The rest of the loan is forgiven in the amount of 20% each year. If you sell the property before the loan is fully forgiven, all net sale proceeds, up to the full outstanding principal balance at the time of sale, will become due and payable.
Apply online through the 877GetHope.org website. Contact the program administrator if you want to complete an application offline or need help with the online process (see below for contact information).
You'll have to provide some documentation with your application, like mortgage statements or statements for your other housing-related costs and proof of income, such as pay stubs and tax returns. Click here to get a list of the documents you'll need.
If you get an unsolicited offer by phone, in the U.S. mail, through email, or by text message offering mortgage relief or foreclosure rescue services, be wary. Scammers are increasingly targeting homeowners who've been affected by COVID-19. Homeowner Assistance Fund programs are free.
If anyone asks you to pay a fee to get housing counseling or to receive foreclosure prevention services from this program, it's a scam.
If you have questions or need help with your application, call 877-GET-HOPE and review the program's FAQs, You may also get help from a HUD-approved housing counselor who will assist you at no cost. To find a counselor near you, go to HUD's website or call 800-569-4287.
Effective date: March 16, 2022