The new application deadline is Wednesday, July 27. The cut-off date had originally been set for Friday, July 22.
EHLP assists homeowners who have experienced a reduction in income and are at risk of foreclosure due to involuntary unemployment or underemployment as a result of the economy or a medical condition.
Eligible homeowners can qualify for an interest free loan, which pays a portion of their monthly mortgage for up to two years, or up to $50,000, whichever comes first.
On June 20, HUD and NeighborWorks announced the roll-out of EHLP to 27 states across the country and Puerto Rico.
They extended the window for struggling homeowners in these areas to submit their documentation for eligibility screening after some participating housing counseling agencies were not able to meet their market allocations for applicant entries.
The Homeownership Preservation Foundation, which is providing assistance for all participating states through its national hotline, issued a statement on Friday noting that it has seen “seen a dramatic rise in applications to the Homeowner’s HOPE Hotline over the last 48 hours from homeowners seeking EHLP—‐related information and assistance.”
“[W]e are very grateful for the extension that will enable us to help so many more unemployed, underemployed, and medically challenged people apply for the program and hopefully stay in their homes,” said Colleen Hernandez, CEO of the nonprofit counseling organization.
Hernandez says the average EHLP loan is expected to be approximately $35,000. She also stressed that the loan is forgiven if the homeowner stays in the home for five years.
Congress provided $1 billion dollars to HUD, as part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, to implement EHLP.
The program is available in the following states: Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Hawaii, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, as well as Puerto Rico.
HUD also identified five states — Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Maryland, and Pennsylvania — operating their own respective mortgage assistance programs that met HUD’s criteria as “substantially similar” to the EHLP. Each of these states has received direct allocations of EHLP funds to directly administer and assist homeowners in need through their own programs.