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HUD Offers $40 Million in Housing Counseling Grants

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) plans to award $40 million worth of grants to support hundreds of housing counseling organizations nationwide, including those focused on reverse mortgages, the agency announced Friday.

HUD is offering $40 million to directly support housing counseling services provided by national, regional and multi-state organizations, as well as State Housing Finance Agencies and more than 200 housing counseling agencies that assist low- and moderate-income families.

“We know that housing counseling can make all the difference in purchasing and, most importantly, keeping a home,” HUD Secretary Julián Castro said in a prepared statement issued Friday. “The grants we offer today will help ensure families and individuals make more informed housing decisions, whether it means buying their first home, avoiding foreclosure, or finding affordable rental housing.”

The counseling funding grants will be competed through HUD’s two-year (FY 2016 – FY 2017) Comprehensive Housing Counseling Grant Program Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) published this week.

HUD also announced it is making $2 million available in FY2016-2017 Housing Counseling Training Grant Program funds to support basic and specialized training for housing counseling agencies.

In addition to providing counseling to homeowners and renters, agencies also assist the homeless in finding transitional housing, provide foreclosure prevention counseling for homeowners facing delinquency or default, as well as help elderly homeowners navigate reverse mortgages.

“Grantees also assist senior citizens seeking reverse mortgages, providing counseling for the rapidly growing number of elderly homeowners who want to convert equity in their homes into income that can be used to pay for home improvements, medical costs, and other living expenses,” HUD stated in a release.

Successful applicants that are awarded a comprehensive counseling grant are eligible to receive funding for reverse mortgage counseling, according to HUD’s funding notice for FY 2016-2017. This award amount will be calculated based on the number of HUD HECM Roster Counselors to be funded and average time per HECM client served.

For organizations interested in applying for HUD grant funding, the application deadline is April 4, 2016. View HUD’s funding notice to learn more.

Written by Jason Oliva