Illinois Hardest Hit Fund Homeowner Emergency Loan Program.
This program is offered as part of the hardest hit fund. Homeowners in Illinois who are unemployed, have had a reduction in work hours, or who have had a reduction in income may be eligible for mortgage payment assistance from this government funded resource. The program is intended to help people pay their mortgage while they look for a new job or try to get their income back up to previous levels.
Overview of the Illinois Hardest Hit Fund, known as the Emergency Loan Program
The program will provide low to moderate income homeowners in Illinois a zero percent interest loan that needs to be used to pay their housing expenses, such as their mortgage, property taxes, insurance, and other expenses. The money can be used by the client of the program for up to 18 months.
The total amount of financial assistance provided can be up to $25,000, however the exact amount will depend on where the family lives, their income, and other criteria.
Loan details from the Illinois Homeowner Program
Borrowers who are found to be qualified may be eligible for a loan of up to $25,000. The loan terms will be in the form of a no interest, deferred payment loan that will be secured by the homeowner’s home and equity with a junior lien. There is therefore collateral required.
The length of loan will have a term of ten years, with the principal amount forgiven monthly over the last five years of the term of the loan. If at anytime the homeowner chooses to either refinance or sell the home within the ten year term of the original loan, repayment will only be required from the borrower if sufficient net equity proceeds exist to repay the outstanding amount due.
There are many conditions and criteria that need to be met. They include the following.
It is required that all applying homeowners need to be be documented as unemployed, they must be able to provide a reduction in income occurred, or they need to be deemed substantially underemployed due to no fault of their own.
All households applying for the Homeowner Emergency Loan Program must demonstrate a reduction in income of at least 25%.
In addition, the amount of the borrower’s monthly mortgage payment must exceed 31% of their present household income. All homeowners in Illinois must also be able to provide their financial hardship, and they will need to submit a hardship affidavit and provide documentation of income loss in order to be able to receive the loan from the hardest hit program.
The program is meant to provide short term relief, so additionally each Illinois borrower who is accepted into the program must submit an action plan outlining the steps they will take to regain financial independence, get back on track with housing payments, and find employment. They may also need to meet with a mortgage counselor in Illinois.
The applicant must also have been in fairly good shape with their home payments prior to the recent reduction in income or unemployment. The borrower must not have been more than 6 months delinquent on their mortgage at the time of application intake.
Additionally homeowners will be required by the terms of the program to demonstrate their ability to afford the payments on the home in the not so distant future. They need to also show that they were making their mortgage payment prior to unemployment or substantial underemployment by providing proof of good payment history on their home loan.
How to apply
You will need to contact a local non-profit housing counselor. However, call the Illinois Housing Development Authority at (312) 836-5200 to learn more about the Homeowner Emergency Loan Program.