Alaska Housing Homeowner Assistance Will Offer Aid To Nearly 11,000 Alaskans
All eligible applicants will receive financial assistance
ANCHORAGE, Alaska, June 2, 2022 – Alaska Housing Finance Corporation has completed its initial analysis of Alaska Housing Homeowner Assistance applications, determining that all eligible applicants will receive some form of aid as part of the congressionally funded program.
The objective is to reduce mortgage delinquencies, forbearances and foreclosures, as well as prevent loss of utilities or energy services for homeowners impacted financially by the COVID-19 pandemic. Alaska is one of 15 states awarded $50 million from U.S. Treasury as part of the Housing Assistance Fund.
Depending on applicant need and eligibility, assistance will be distributed through one of three avenues:
- Providing two months of upcoming utility payments based on a two-month average of the individual’s utility costs
- Past due utility expenses will not be addressed
- Providing up to two mortgage payments and utility payments with vendors identified at the time of application.
- Prioritized to bring past due mortgage payments current and the potential to address past due utilities with vendors identified at application.
Having validated the identities of applicants and confirmed eligibility based on income documentation, AHFC is now in the second and more labor-intensive review phase, requesting and evaluating homeowner liabilities specific to each applicant. This aspect of the process involves working with mortgage servicers all across the United States to determine the amount of assistance that may be offered per qualifying applicant.
“After evaluating the data, our team has a comprehensive picture of statewide needs and the levels of financial crisis that Alaska homeowners are facing,” says Bryan Butcher, CEO/executive director of AHFC. “With funding available to cure the delinquencies of those who qualify within U.S. Treasury guidelines (up to $40,000), our efforts will now turn to accelerate the next phase of the review process,” Butcher added.
More than 12,000 individuals from every corner in the state used the Alaska Housing Homeowner Assistance eligibility checker to determine whether they may qualify for the program. Of the 10,979 applications submitted from March 14-April 4 and through subsequent appeals, 2,384 applicants indicated they were past due on their mortgage; 1,516 said they were at risk of foreclosure; 1,488 indicated they were in forbearance for an average of nine months.
Data from the applications submitted show average monthly mortgage payments at $1,498; average monthly utility payments at $567, and average amount of other monthly household expenses estimated at $586.
Roughly 1,000 eligible applicants who requested assistance with only utility expenses are scheduled for the first round of payments to be paid by three identified non-profit partners: Helping Alaska (Fairbanks), Kodiak Brother Francis, and Valley Charities (Mat-Su). Notification and fund distribution for these applicants is expected to begin this month.
Funds for eligible applicants of mortgage assistance or reinstatement will be distributed mirroring AHFC’s successful Rent Relief process. AHFC will disburse federal funds directly to the eligible applicants’ mortgage servicer, mortgage contract holder, manufactured/mobile home lender, condominium/homeowners association, local taxing authority and utility provider(s). No funds will be provided directly to applicants. The maximum amount of funds any household can benefit from is $40,000 with mortgage delinquencies prioritized over other expenses.
U.S. Treasury allocated more than $9.9 billion in federal funds toward relief for the country’s homeowners who have experienced home insecurities related to the pandemic after Jan. 21, 2020. Established under Section 3206 of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, the law prioritizes federal funds for homeowners with the greatest hardships, leveraging local and national income indicators to maximize the impact.
Alaska Housing Finance Corporation is a public corporation with a history of providing Alaskans access to safe, quality and affordable housing through home financing, energy efficiency programs, public housing and more. Since 1986, Alaska Housing has contributed more than $2.1 billion to the State of Alaska's General Fund.