By Aldon Thomas Stiles | California Black Media | March 1, 2023
(CBM) – Earlier this month, the California Housing Financing Agency (CalHFA) and the Sacramento branch of NeighborWorks held a press conference at the State Capitol to announce the expansion of California’s mortgage relief program.
“Over the past year, the California Mortgage Relief program has been helping Californians that are most vulnerable to overcome the financial challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Tiena Johnson Hall, Executive Director of the California Housing Finance Agency.
One of the major new changes to eligibility, CalHFA officials say, applies to those who own residences with up to four units. Those homeowners can now apply for assistance. Relief through the program has also extended to those with partial-claim second mortgages or loan deferrals from the beginning of 2020.
Additionally, for homeowners who have missed at least two mortgage payments or one property payment before March 1st of this year, the delinquency date for payments has been reset.
Previous beneficiaries of the program are now eligible for additional funds that could add up to $80,000 in total aid. Officials say the program is meant for those who have had trouble keeping up with housing payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Funding for the California Mortgage relief program comes from the Federal Government’s American Rescue Plan Act’s Homeowners Assistance Fund implemented in 2021, which allocated $1 billion for eligible homeowners across the country.
According to Hall, the program has distributed federal grants and funds to over 10,000 California homeowners.
Not only is applying to the program free, she says, homeowners do not have to worry about paying back the relief funds.
The program is provided to homeowners through the CalHFA Homeowner Relief Corporation.
During the press conference held in the first week of Black History Month, Hall made a point to mention that those who tend to struggle with homeownership in California and the nation at large are Black.
“Black communities have been shut out of homeownership by a variety of factors including discriminatory housing practices which equates to less generational wealth,” said Hall.
Homeownership is an incredibly important tool in building generational wealth, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Volma Volcy, Founder and Executive Director of the Ring of Democracy, said it is important to secure the prosperity of neighborhoods where residents are at risk for foreclosure.
“When a family is displaced, a whole community is destroyed,” said Volcy.
Volcy also said that the California Mortgage Relief Program has been successful so far in providing aid for those in fear of losing their homes due to pandemic-related financial hardships.
Visit the California Mortgage Relief website to assess your eligibility and apply for the program.
Homeowner Repair Assistance Program expansion of program
CVV News l October 25, 2022
The City of Modesto is pleased to announce an expansion of its Homeowner Repair Assistance Program. Eligible residents may apply for low-interest loans and grants to make health, safety and beautification repairs to a home’s exterior. With funding from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), the City of Modesto is expanding its current Homeowner Repair Assistance Program. The program expansion will provide additional financial and technical assistance to repair or eliminate health and safety hazard conditions and assist in the beautification and sustainability of more homes in Modesto. The new funding source allows for expansion to residents who earn up to 140% of the Area Median Income increasing the maximum income limit from $84,150 to $151,500. Residents may qualify for a loan of up to $25,000 in assistance for the repairs with a 10% grant of up to $2,500. Financing will consist of a 10-year loan with a 3% annual accrual of interest. Allowed repairs are limited to the exterior of the home only.
The City’s current Low-Moderate Income Homeowner Repair Assistance Program is funded by a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and is aimed at addressing private property nuisance issues and supporting residents with health and safety repairs. The CDBG funding source allows for clients to be served who earn up to 80% of the Area Median Income. Single family homeowners can qualify for a 20- year deferred loan at 3% interest with 20% of the total project costs granted after a 10- year affordability period. Mobile homes are granted up to $20,000 forgiven after a 5-year affordability period. Allowed repairs are limited to health and safety only.
Learn more about the Home Repair Assistance Program on our website.
For questions regarding this Press Release contact Diana Ruiz-Del Re.
EAH Housing Archway Commons II Now Accepting Applications
CVV News l October 19, 2022
EAH Housing is now accepting applications for Archway Commons II an affordable housing development in Modesto. Applications for the 74 affordable housing rental units will be accepted through November 15, 2022. Construction of the development is expected to conclude in November of 2022 with a ribbon cutting in the spring of 2023.
EAH Housing, an affordable housing nonprofit organization, began construction on Archway Commons II in the summer of 2021 and is the second phase of the affordable housing development Archway Commons in Modesto. Phase one of Archway Commons, built in 2014, featured 76 affordable housing units.
Archway Commons II features a two-story garden-style apartment building providing 74 new 1, 2, and 3-bedroom rental apartments for people whose income is at or below 30% – 60% of the Area Median Income (AMI). Seven apartments are designated for individuals and families who have completed the assistance and training program through Modesto’s Downtown Streets Team.
Applications for the 2, and 3-bedroom units are now available and will be accepted through November 15, 2022. Applicants will need to register through the Archway Commons II Online Application Portal to apply. Applications will be reviewed in order of online submission date and will take one week to be processed
Funding for Archway Commons II is provided by MUFG Union Bank, California Department of Housing and Community Development Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Program (HCD AHSC), Hudson Housing Capital, and 4% Low-Income Housing Tax Credits.
Check out this Archway Commons II video update, photos and video courtesy of Huff Construction Company, Inc
City of Modesto Approves New Agreement with Downtown Streets
CVV News-Posted: August 20, 2022
The Modesto City Council approved a new agreement with the Downtown Streets Team at the City Council Meeting held on August 9, 2022. The Downtown Streets Team is an essential piece of the City’s efforts to end homelessness, and the new agreement funds the fifty-member team until 2025.
Since 2019, the Downtown Streets Team (DST) has supported 204 team members and has assisted 79 individuals to obtain housing, and 61 individuals obtain employment. Downtown Streets Team has played an integral role in shifting the narrative on homelessness and the community has rallied behind the organization to support DST members with financial support, housing, and employment opportunities.
“They were great,” said former Downtown Streets Team member Colleen. “They helped me get employment through Ready2Work with an actual paid position. I was able to get work experience. DST supported me until I got back on my feet not only financially but motivational as well.”
The Downtown Streets Team organization has been exceptional in supporting individuals experiencing homelessness by providing daily meaningful activities, building camaraderie, and supporting members in the following areas: securing employment, increasing engagement in mental health treatment, removing barriers to housing and employment, and assisting with vital documents. The daily meaningful activity for members includes outreach and engagement of individuals experiencing homelessness and litter abatement on public rights-of-ways such as parks, sidewalks, and other city-owned property.
“Downtown Streets Team has become an essential part of our community and efforts towards ending homelessness and creating a path to self-sufficiency for those experiencing homelessness,” said City of Modesto Community Development Manager Jessica Hill.
The new agreement is funded through a combination of one-time monies from the American Rescue Plan Act, Community Development Block Grant, and the litter Abatement Fund for a total of $2.1 million over the next 3 years. The anticipated work schedule will include 4-hour shifts Monday through Friday, with the team split into groups to tackle hot spot areas in the community, as assigned by the City.