1. Learn about this resource. 

Homeowners can receive a forgivable loan if they’ve fallen behind on their mortgage, property taxes, or other fees that come with owning a home because they’ve become unemployed, had their hours reduced, or experienced an involuntary loss of income. You can receive up to $60,000 to help you catch up on past mortgage payments, property taxes, homeowner association fees, insurance, or other housing-related fees. You can also use the loan to pay your mortgage through December 31, 2021. The application deadline was May 14, 2021, and the program is not accepting new applications.

 

This program is called HomeSaver and is offered by the DC Housing Finance Agency.

2. Check if you are eligible.

You may be eligible if all of these statements are true:

  • You own the home that you live in.

  • You live in DC.

  • You do not live in a housing cooperative (that’s when you own a share of a building rather than just one unit).

  • You owe up to $60,000 on past mortgage payments, property taxes, homeowner association fees, insurance, or other housing-related fees. Or, you can show that you will be able to pay any overdue payments over $60,000.

  • And if one of these statements is true:

    • You’ve received unemployment benefits in the last 12 months.

    • Your income has been reduced by at least 10% in the last 12 months. For example, maybe your hours have been cut back significantly or you took a new job with significantly lower wages.

    • Your spouse or co-borrower passed away.

    • You experienced a medical event that prevented you from working or required you to spend a significant amount of money on medical bills.

    • You and your spouse divorced.

    • You have a disability.

 

Depending on your circumstances, there may be some additional requirements that a housing counselor can check with you after you apply.

get help paying your mortgage, taxes, and other fees for your home?

DO YOU WANT TO

3. Apply.


  1. Create a profile online by May 14, 2021.
    • If you’d like a housing counselor to help you create your profile, start by calling one of our local nonprofit partners.
    • If you’ve received HomeSaver before, sign in with the same account information or email HomeSaver@dchfa.org if you need help with your password. Don’t create a new profile.
  2. Complete your profile with information about your home and your current mortgage lender.
  3. If you aren’t already working with a housing counselor, we’ll email or call you with the information for one who will work with you on your application.
  4. Your housing counselor will email or call you with a list of documents to gather for your application. This may include:
    • Documentation of your financial hardship, such as a letter from a previous employer, a medical note stating that you can’t work for medical reasons, two years of tax returns, a 30-day pay stub, or an unemployment benefits statement
    • Documentation on your overdue housing payments, such as a recent mortgage statement or a statement from your homeowner’s association
  5. Meet with your housing counselor. Bring along the materials you gathered in Step 3—your housing counselor will check them to make sure you’re eligible and then help you complete your application.





4. Gather more information.

What happens after I apply?


  1. We will check your application within 48 hours and will let your counselor know if we need any additional materials. If you’re applying for help with your mortgage payments, we will also make sure that your lender is willing to participate. If they are not, your housing counselor will let you know that we won’t be able to help with your mortgage payments.
  2. Once we have all the necessary information, your housing counselor will call or email you to let you know that your application has been accepted, usually within 1-5 business days of submitting your application.
  3. Depending on what fees you need help paying, your counselor may ask you for additional information in order to finalize your loan amount.
  4. Your housing counselor will help you complete the loan agreement and other forms to prepare for closing.
  5. We will call or email you to let you know that your loan has been assigned to a title company and ask you to re-confirm your eligibility. The title company will contact you to schedule an appointment with them to close on your loan. This usually happens in-person and within two weeks of your application being accepted.
  6. You go to closing in-person at the title company’s office and sign documents finalizing your loan.
  7. The title company will send us your signed documents, and we’ll pay your lender (if you’re applying for help with your mortgage) or the title company (who will make payments if you’re applying for help with any other housing-related fees). You should see the funds on your statements within 7-10 business days.
  8. If you’re using the loan to pay your mortgage through December 31, 2021, you’ll have to provide additional information about your income every three months between June and December.
  9. Every year you live in your home, we’ll forgive 20% of your loan amount. After 5 years, we will send you a letter saying that your loan is fully forgiven.
  10. If you move, refinance your loan, or rent out your home before the 5 years is up, you’ll have to repay your loan. You can find out how much you owe and how to repay by requesting a pay-off statement online.

If your application is not approved, we’ll let your housing counselor know and mail you a notice of ineligibility within two weeks after your submit your application. If you disagree with our decision, you can appeal within 30 days of receiving your notice of ineligibility. We include information about how to appeal in your notice of ineligibility.




Are there any additional requirements I should know about?


If you are still getting monthly mortgage payments through HomeSaver and your income increases, you need to call us at (202) 777-1600, Monday-Friday from 9am to 5pm, or email us at HomeSaver@dchfa.org. If you’re using the loan to pay your mortgage through December 31, 2021, you’ll have to provide additional information about your income every three months between May and November. After your income increases, we will make two additional mortgage payments on your behalf before you’ll need to start paying them yourself. You’ll receive a 60- and 30-day notice before you need to start paying your mortgage again yourself.




Who should I contact if I have questions?


First, take a look at the frequently asked questions at the bottom of the page. If you still have questions, please reach out to our HomeSaver team at (202) 777-1600, Monday-Friday from 9am to 5pm. Or, you can email the team at HomeSaver@dchfa.org using the subject line “HomeSaver Question.”




I still need help paying my mortgage. What should I do?


You can find information about other resources that might help on our mortgage resources page.




Frequently Asked Questions


I’ve used HomeSaver in the past. Can I use HomeSaver again to help me pay my housing fees? Yes. Each eligible homeowner can use HomeSaver to help with up to $60,000 of payments total. If you’ve used less than $60,000 in the past, you can apply again for the difference between your previous loan and $60,000. When do I need to repay the HomeSaver loan? If you live in your home for at least five years after receiving HomeSaver, your loan will be forgiven. If you sell your home, rent it out, or refinance your loan before the five years are up, you will need to repay the loan. You can find out how much you owe and how to repay by requesting a pay-off statement online. Can I apply for HomeSaver if I have filed for bankruptcy? Applications from homeowners who have filed for bankruptcy will be considered on a case-by-case basis.




Do all eligible applicants receive assistance?


Maybe. If you’re applying for HomeSaver to pay overdue mortgage payments, your lender has to agree to participate. They may already be participating if they’re listed on our website. If they don’t agree, we’re not able to help with your mortgage payments, but depending on your circumstances, we may still be able to help with your other housing-related fees.





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Keywords: mortgage assistance, homeowners, COVID-19 public health emergency, lost income, lost job, hours reduced, unemployed, financial hardship, laid off, fired, falling behind, underwater, late payment, stay in your home, loan relief

This page was last updated June 2021.