The US Treasury administers the Hardest Hit Fund (HHF), which provides aid to the states that were most impacted by the economic crisis. Each of these states have local agencies that help homeowners in various ways, including mortgage payment assistance for the unemployed, principal reduction, and transactional assistance. This helps people either afford the homes they’re in, or move to more affordable housing.
Programs & Eligibility
- The Principal Reduction Assistance (PRA) component is a permanent mortgage modification or eligible refinance contribution provided on an approved HARP 2.0 or other similar refinances. It is a servicer-approved component designed to bring the loan balance to fair market value.
- The Second Mortgage Settlement and Extinguishment (SSE) component is designed to eliminate second liens or HELOCs entirely and can be paired with assistance from other first lien SOHAZ components, including short sale.
- The Unemployment/Underemployment Mortgage Assistance (UMA) component is a monthly assistance provided to homeowners who have experiences a reduction in income and need help paying their mortgage.
- The Short Sale Assistance (SSA) component assists homeowners in transitioning out of their homes once no other assistance is available.
How to Apply
You can apply for the program directly at the state website above. However, it may be a good idea to talk for free to a nonprofit counselor from a HUD-approved agency to find out all the federal, state and lender programs that you may qualify for and receive a personalized action plan on how to get started.