June 21, 2011 (Shirley Allen)

Homeowners who have experienced a reduction in income and are at risk of foreclosure due to unemployment or underemployment as a result of economic or medical conditions may now qualify for a new emergency homeowner loan program introduced by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

As part of the Dodd-Frank Reform Bill and the Consumer Protection Act, HUD, in conjunction with NeighborWorks America, announced the launch of the Emergency Homeowners’ Loan Program (EHLP) as a complement to the Hardest Hit Fund that was previously available to 18 states and the District of Columbia.

The new program now provides mortgage assistance in all 50 states for the unemployed and the underemployed.

Eligible homeowners can qualify for an interest free loan which helps to pay a portion of their monthly mortgage payment for up to two years or up to $50,000, whichever comes first.

“Through the Emergency Homeowners’ Loan Program the Obama Administration is continung our strong commitment to help keep families in their homes during tough economic times,” said HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. “Working with our community partners across the nation through NeighborWorks® America, we are pleased to launch this program today in 27 states and Puerto Rico to help families keep their homes while looking for work or recovering from illness.”

The goal of EHLP is to provide assistance for up to 30,000 distressed homeowners with an average loan of approximately $35,000.

Contact information for participating agencies, the Pre-Applicant Screening Worksheet and more information on the EHLP program and its eligibility requirements can be found at www.FindEHLP.org or by calling toll free at 855-FIND-EHLP (346-3345).

Tags: HUD, mortgage assistance, unemployed, underemployed, interest free loan, EHLP, foreclosure, hardest hit fund, distressed homeowners