Minnesotans who have fallen behind on their mortgages and face a foreclosure due to a financial hardship, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, can now apply for government assistance through the new HomeHelpMN program. Applications for assistance opened on Tuesday, May 17 at HomeHelpMN.org. The application period will end on June 17.
Minnesota received $109 million from the Federal American Rescue Plan to help homeowners get caught up on their mortgage payments.
To be eligible for the program you must own and occupy the home in Minnesota. Eligibility is based on your county’s median household income and will vary by county. In Minnesota’s seven-county metro area, those limits are $90,000 for a single person, $93,850 for a couple and $117,300 for a four-member household.
Income limits can be found at the programs’ website homehelpmn.org/income-limits.
“Many households were already one paycheck away from falling behind even before the pandemic. Lost wages quickly led to missed payments,” said Minnesota Housing Commissioner Jennifer Ho in a news release. “Many Minnesotans have fallen behind on their mortgage. Many are even facing foreclosure. HomeHelpMN opened today with a goal of preserving homeownership for as many Minnesotans as possible.”
Commissioner Ho said demand for the funds is expected to be higher than what is available and encouraged those who are in need to apply as soon as possible.
Homeowners can receive up to $35,000 in assistance, for qualified past-due expenses including mortgage bills and contract for deed payments, manufactured home loan payments, property taxes, homeowner association fees, property insurance, and manufactured home lot lease and Tribal Land Lease payments.
Payments will be made directly to your mortgage lender or debt holder.
You can submit your application online at Home-HelpMN.org or over the phone at 800-388-3226. The website and application are available in English, Spanish, Somali, and Hmong and other languages. Callers will be prompted to select a language and will be connected to an interpreter if they prefer a language other than English. Call Center hours are from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday through Saturday.
Minnesota Housing said if applications received during the application period exceed available funding, applicants may be put on a wait list. A submitted application is not a guarantee of funding availability, it warned.