Keep Your Home California is getting more money – the second time in two months – to help homeowners struggling to pay their mortgages.
The state program, administered through the California Housing Finance Agency, will receive $169.8 million, the U.S. Department of the Treasury announced Wednesday. In February, the program received $213.5 million and was extended to Dec. 31, 2020 or until the money is used, whichever comes first. It was originally set to end Dec. 31, 2017.
The new round of money comes after the program, which helps low- and moderate-income homeowners, reported its two best quarters since starting in February 2011. During the third and fourth quarters of 2015, the program issued more than $95 million.
So far, Keep Your Home California has helped more than 62,200 homeowners statewide and issued about $1.34 billion.
In Fresno County, 2,166 homeowners have received $45.8 million since the program’s inception. A total of 3,664 homeowners in the four-county region, including Fresno, Madera, Kings and Tulare, have received $73.4 million.
Nonprofit community housing agencies like the Community Housing Council of Fresno are excited to hear about the extra funding.
“It’s huge,” said executive director John Shore. “The program is now so effective. It’s a big part of what we do.”
Participants can qualify for help under four different programs: unemployment mortgage assistance, mortgage reinstatement assistance program, principal mortgage reduction and transition assistance program. A pilot program was introduced last year to help senior homeowners with reverse mortgages avoid foreclosure.
Most central San Joaquin Valley homeowners are getting help paying their monthly mortgage under the unemployment mortgage assistance program, Shore said. These are the people who recently lost their jobs and need help with the house payment. The state will pay up to $3,000 a month for 18 months, he said.
Shore encourages homeowners who unsuccessfully applied before to try again. “They have more servicers participating,” Shore said. “It’s easier to qualify.”
The latest round of funding should allow the program to help another 12,000 homeowners who could qualify to receive up to $100,000 in mortgage assistance.