Frequently Asked Questions for Mortgage Assistance through the Homeowners Assistance Fund | Sponsored

NO CITIZENSHIP REQUIREMENTS

Do I have to be a US citizen?

What if my household members are undocumented immigrants?

No, you do not need to be a US citizen to be eligible. We do not track citizenship or immigration status for you or any member of your household.

PRIVACY AND CONFIDENTIALITY

How will you ensure that my private information remains secure and confidential? Will my name appear on some sort of government list? Will I be enrolled in other government programs? Will you share or sell my information to someone else?

Hotline and Counselors will not sell or share your personally identifiable information with any other government, public or private entity. Applications for federal HAF funding are private and secure, but certain limited information may be subject to public records requests. Throughout the process, you should never be asked to provide citizenship or immigration status for yourself or a member of your household.

HOTLINE

How can I get help?

Help is available now through the Washington Homeowners Helpline at 1-877-894-4663.

When is the hotline open?

Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PST. If you call after hours, leave a message and a helpline representative will call you back. Or ask to be called back at WashingtonHAF.org.

Is help available in languages ​​other than English?

Yes! Hotline help is available in over 220 languages.

Who are housing counselors and why should I trust them?

For many years, housing counselors have been an important part of Washington State’s network of nonprofit organizations dedicated to supporting homeowners with free, unbiased assistance. Their job is to defend you, find solutions to keep you in your home, and ensure the best possible outcome for your situation.

GENERAL

What is the HAF program? Who is it for?

The Washington State Homeowner Assistance Fund is providing individual support and federal relief funds — up to $60,000 per household — to qualified Washington homeowners behind on their mortgages due to pandemic-related hardship.

I have seen confusing information about the HAF program online and on social media. How do you know what is true and correct?

Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation on the internet about this program, especially from scam artists hoping to gain access to HAF funding. Also, HAF programs in other states have different funding guidelines and limits than the Washington HAF. Call the Homeowner Helpline at 1-877-894-4663 for specific help and information specific to Washington State homeowners.

How much money can I get?

Homeowners may be eligible for grants of up to $60,000, depending on their circumstances. A housing counselor will help you assess your needs and submit your application.

Where does the money come from?

Funds for the HAF come from the US Department of Treasury, under the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) passed by Congress in 2021.

What kind of help does the program offer?

HAF connects you with a housing counselor who provides free, confidential support and can help you with many options to prevent foreclosure, including accessing federal funds if needed. Call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663 for a free assessment and referral to a housing counselor in your area.

Who is the Washington State Housing Finance Commission (WSHFC)?

We are an autonomous state agency, dedicated to improving housing access and affordability for Washington residents since 1983. The Commission administers the federal HAF program for our state and oversees a network of agencies statewide non-profit housing counseling agency.

FUNDING AND ELIGIBILITY

Who can apply for funding? How do I know if I am eligible?

Any Washington homeowner can get help through the Hotline. Eligibility for HAF funding is based on a variety of factors, including pandemic-related challenges. When you call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663, a housing counselor will help you determine what help will be most helpful to you.

What is “pandemic difficulty”?

The HAF program will take into account a series of experiences which will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663 so we can help you through the process and get you the best possible outcome.

Do I have to live in the property I own to benefit from the aid? What if I own a rental property or a second home?

Yes, you must live in the property and it must not have more than four (4) units. But you should always call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663 to see if other assistance is available for you.

If I have a COVID-19 loan modification, am I eligible?

A loan modification does not prevent you from being eligible for assistance. Call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663 and an advisor will help you determine your eligibility. https://bit.ly/YakimaHerald-HAF

Can the program cover future mortgage payments?

No. The Washington HAF program can keep you on top of your home-related bills and try to negotiate more affordable mortgage payments in the future, but it does not provide funds for future mortgage payments.

I recently lost my home to foreclosure and was unaware of this program. It’s too late? Can I still request these funds retroactively?

Unfortunately, owners who are already after foreclosure are not eligible for the HAF program. We always encourage you to call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663 to start rebuilding your path to future home ownership.

APPLICATION PROCESS

How to apply? Will someone help me with the app?

Call the Washington Homeowners Helpline now at 1-877-894-4663. A housing adviser accompanies you at each stage, including for the HAF request.

Does it cost anything to apply?

No. The program and the application are completely free.

What type of material is needed for the application process?

You will need a variety of documents related to your home loan and finances. A housing counselor will help you determine what you need based on your situation.

Can I apply myself to the HAF? Yes, if you need less than $15,000 you can apply at wahafportal.org.

However, we strongly encourage you to contact the Hotline at 1-877-894-4663 for assistance from a Housing Counselor. A housing counselor can help you with your application and ensure that you are properly assessed for all potential assistance programs, including access to maximum HAF program benefits.

DISTRIBUTION OF FUNDING

Are funds available at this time?

Funds are available now. Whatever your situation, you should call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663 now to start the process. https://bit.ly/YakimaHerald-HAF

What can I use the funds for?

HAF funds can cover things like mortgage reinstatement, reducing the amount you owe on your mortgage, reducing your interest rate, home insurance, homeowners association fees or privileges , overdue property taxes, etc.

How will I receive the money if I qualify?

You will not receive any direct payment. If you qualify for financial assistance, the program will issue payments to entities you owe money to, such as banks, insurance companies, tax collectors, homeowners associations, etc.

Is it a loan? Should I refund the money?

No, HAF aid is not a loan. Funds would be given to your creditors to resolve your financial difficulties.

How long after my request will it take for the money to be distributed?

It depends on various factors. The sooner you call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663, the sooner we can help you. https://bit.ly/YakimaHerald-HAF

I’m already in foreclosure. Will the money arrive in time to stop the bank from taking my house?

It may not be too late. The sooner you call the helpline at 1-877-894-4663, the more likely we can help save your home. https://bit.ly/YakimaHerald-HAF

MAKE KNOWN

I would like to share information about this program. Do you have any equipment that I can use?

Feel free to refer people to the helpline at 1-877-894-4663. Printable flyers and shareable social media graphics are available online for download at: WashingtonHAF.org

Our non-profit housing counseling partners:

  • Park view services
  • Washington OIC
  • American Financial Solutions (AFS)
  • Metropolitan Seattle Urban League
  • SNAP (Spokane Neighborhood Action Partners)
  • The center of La Raza
  • Northwest Justice Project