In 2010, the federal government named California as among the top 18 states hardest hit by the market downturn. In an effort to curtail Californians losing their homes, the government created what is now the Keep Your Home California program, which was developed in collaboration with numerous community partners, foreclosure counselors, housing advocates and others directly involved in helping struggling homeowners.
Recently, Keep Your Home California has expanded its eligibility to different types of distressed homeowners. It has officially expanded its service to include aid to homeowners who raised cash through refinancing, who have second homes and who have been unemployed longer than six months. They have also extended the limit from six months to nine months for financial aid to those with mortgages of up to $3,000. For homeowners who received cash for refinancing their homes, they are now eligible for a reduction in their loans by $50,000 in order to help make their monthly payments more affordable with the Principal Reduction Program. Also available is a $5,000 stipend to help those relocating after opting for a deed in lieu or short sale through the Transition Assistance Program.
$2 billion strong, this program has already helped nearly 8,000 homeowners and Keep Your Home California is looking to make that number even larger. According to The Press-Enterprise, “almost 50 mortgage servicers now participate and together they represent more than 85 percent of mortgages in the state” (see article). Business Wire quotes “This expanded eligibility will allow more families to qualify and receive greater assistance,” said Claudia Cappio, Executive Director of the California Housing Finance Agency. “We are continuously evaluating our experience so far and making adjustments like these based on the initial results of the Keep Your Home California program” (see article).
Since the program’s inception, it has been steadily increasing its aid potential with greater funds and an extended reach. In order for homeowners to be eligible, their lenders must be participating in the program so that along with more funds, Keep Your Home California is seeking to expand its lender participation.This program is not just about handing out cash, however, as it offers counseling, financial events and other resources to help educate distressed homeowners about their options.
Should you have any questions about this program, look here:
888.954.KEEP(5337) between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays, or visit their site here.