Government program can prevent foreclosure

Your home doesn't have to be in foreclosure to apply

US Goverment Hardest Hit FundCredit: US Treasury

In February 2010, President Obama initiated a government program for mortgage help: the Hardest Hit Fund program provides assistance for homeowner mortgage payments and helps stop home foreclosures on financially-stressed homeowners in the District of Columbia and 18 states with the highest unemployment and steep decline in home values caused by the explosion of the housing bubble and the ultimate Great Recession. Long-term mortgage assistance is available through the housing agencies of the individual states. Learn how to find help to prevent home foreclosure. The government program to prevent foreclosure and get help with mortgage payments is free. All that's required is your time and due diligence.

The Hardest Hit Fund programs are available in: California, Michigan, Ohio, Arizona, North Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Rhode Island, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, New Jersey, Mississippi, Nevada, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Washington DC. The terms of the mortgage assistance program vary from state to state, but the method of application is the same.

First, you must consult with a credit counselor, which has been approved by your state's housing agency. The counselor will then take all your financial and personal hardship information and act as a mediator between you and the housing finance agency (HFA).

Guidelines for Hardest Hit Fund financial help with mortgage payments:

  • Unemployment or underemployment

  • Going through divorce or some other financial hardship like illness

  • Can own more than one house and still get mortgage help

  • Need moving assistance to more affordable housing

  • Funding to eliminate second mortgage lien loans

  • Help with affordable mortgage modification

  • Your house doesn't have to be in foreclosure to apply

What you will need:

  • IRS 1040 completed forms
  • All notifications and communications from your bank or mortgage lender
  • Bank statements
  • Copy of mortgage agreement statements
  • Property tax and insurance records
  • Personal hardship statement

Check this list for individual state links to housing finance agencies (HFA) for instructions.

About the government program, Hardest Hit Funds: help with mortgage payments does not occur overnight, so the sooner you apply, the better off you will be.