Governor Ned Lamont announced on Monday the launch ofÂ MyHomeCTÂ â€“ a new State of Connecticut program that is providing mortgage relief to homeowners who have experienced financial hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, many families have fallen behind on their regular housing payments, placing them at risk of losing their homes to foreclosure. According to the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies, more than one-third of Connecticut homeowners have lost employment income and more than one in nine have fallen behind on housing payments at some point during the pandemic.
As part of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, Connecticut has been awarded approximately $123 million to establish MyHomeCT, a program funded by the Homeowner Assistance Fund. The Connecticut Housing Finance Authority (CHFA) will be working in collaboration with the Connecticut Department of Housing to administer the program.Â
â€œThe public health crisis that weâ€™ve experienced over the last two years has had a significant impact on the ability of many homeowners to pay for the costs of their housing, which is why we are dedicating this funding to provide much-needed support,â€�Â Governor Lamont said. â€œThanks to the American Rescue Plan Act and the support of our Congressional delegation, MyHomeCT will ease some of the financial burden that homeowners have faced during this pandemic and will help ensure that their housing situation remains stable. I encourage any homeowner who has come across difficult times since the pandemic to learn more about the program and consider applying.â€�
50 percent of Hispanic-Latino homeowners lost income by the first quarter of 2021, the highest among any ethnic group. As a result, 16 percent of Hispanic-Latino homeowners were behind on their mortgage payments. That is more than twice the 7 percent share of white homeowners.
The program will be able to help eligible homeowners who have suffered financial hardship because of the COVID-19 pandemic by offering reinstatement, up to 12 months of forward payments, or a combination of both. The assistance is meant to cure and/or prevent mortgage and housing-related delinquencies and foreclosure.
Eligibility requirements include:Â Â
- Applicants must live in the state of Connecticut and occupy the property as their primary residence.
- Applicant/household member must have experienced a COVID-19-related financial hardship after January 21, 2020, or experienced a financial hardship before January 21, 2020, which was then exacerbated by the pandemic. Assistance for delinquency prior to January 21, 2020, is capped to three months.
- Property must be an owner-occupied 1-to-4 unit house, condominium, townhouse, or manufactured home.
- Homeowners applying for mortgage assistance must have a mortgage that had a principal balance at or below the Federal Housing Finance Agencyâ€™s conforming loan limits for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac at the time of origination.
- Household income must be equal to or less than 150 percent area median income (AMI), adjusted for household size.
Like so many others in Connecticut, Kristinâ€™s family fell on hard times. With two young children at home and only one income, it was becoming difficult to keep up with housing expenses:
â€œâ€¦I got a call one day that saved everything. My mortgage servicer called to tell me about the MyHomeCT program and encouraged me to apply. The application process was easier than I expected, and the amazing relief the program provided was more than I could have ever hoped for. It gave my family a second chance, and we are beyond grateful. Thank you so much to CHFA for keeping my family in our home and our mortgage current!â€�Â
â€œDue to many unforeseen circumstances, such as job losses or the need to care for loved ones, thousands of Connecticut homeowners are now in the situation where they need assistance or they will be in danger of losing their homes,â€�Â Seila Mosquera-Bruno, commissioner of the Department of Housing, said. â€œThe MyHomeCT program will address a great need in our state by providing direct assistance to cure or prevent mortgage delinquencies and pay for other housing-related costs.â€�
How to Apply: If you are a Connecticut homeowner that has faced financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be eligible for the MyHomeCT program. Visit: www.chfa.org/MyHomeCT to learn more and to apply.
If you need help with your application, you may call 877-894-4111 (toll-free) or visit one of the MyHomeCT Resource Centers.
The list of resource centers can be found at www.chfa.org/MyHomeCT.
Publisher’s Notes: This article was written in part by the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority.