Update: On August 4, 2020, the Iowa Finance Authority, which administers the program described below, announced new rules that will allow more Iowa homeowners to apply for help. Specifically, anyone who was eligible for the previously-available expanded $600 federal unemployment benefits will now be able to apply for mortgage (or rental) assistance.
Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds has allocated federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funds to help homeowners in that state who’ve been economically impacted by the COVID-19 national emergency.
Under the COVID-19 Iowa Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Program, the state offers short-term mortgage assistance, up to $3,000 maximum, to homeowners beginning with the April 1st mortgage payment, including up to two months in arrears. The money can be used to cover monthly payments, as well as late fees.
To qualify for mortgage assistance, you’ll have to meet specific requirements, including the following.
Government-insured and conventional mortgages, as well as mortgages through Habitat for Humanity affiliates, are eligible for assistance. However, manufactured home loans and contract sales are not. To get further details about the program, read this fact sheet.
To apply, you have to use the program’s online application portal. You can’t apply by email, U.S. mail, fax, or any other means. You begin the process by filling out the program’s pre-application checklist. If you preliminarily qualify for assistance based on this screening checklist, you’ll get access to a link to the full application. After you apply, you can log into your application at any time to check its review status.
Assistance money will be provided on an ongoing basis to eligible applicants on a first-come, first-served basis until funds run out. If your application is incomplete, your application won’t move forward to the review phase, and you won’t get assistance. So, if you receive a notice of incomplete application with instructions to provide missing information, you should submit all required information as soon as possible to ensure that your application proceeds to the review stage. The Iowa Finance Authority, which administers the program, has contracted with partner organizations to provide administrative support under the program. So, you might get an email or other communication from another agency requesting follow-up information.
Homeowners who don’t provide all necessary information or are found ineligible based on the program’s requirements, won’t receive assistance. But if the state approves your application, a one-time payment is issued directly to your loan servicer.
As part of the application, you have to self-certify your income. The application review team will review this certification along with supporting documentation, like pay stubs or other appropriate documentation of lost income, as well as your latest mortgage statement. You’ll also have to acknowledge that you’re aware that it is a criminal violation under Iowa law to make a false statement in writing to get assistance from a state agency.
If you have questions about the COVID-19 Iowa Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Program, call 515-452-0400 or 800-432-7230. You can also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
See the Iowa Finance Authority’s website to learn more about available resources for Iowans affected by COVID-19.
Effective date: May 29, 2020