How Do I Complain
You may need things like ramps, grab bars, or service animals. Housing providers cannot deny someone housing because of a disability. And they cannot refuse to make reasonable accommodations for a tenant with a disability. Learn more about disability rights in housing and how to file a complaint if you feel that youve been a victim of housing discrimination.
Senior Housing Assistance And Rental Help
Finding affordable housing can be a major challenge for older Americans. The Department of Housing and Urban Development offers a number of programs that provide rent help for seniors and are designed to help low-income people secure decent and safe housing.
Itâs important to note that demand for government-assisted housing far outstrips supply. Wait lists of two to five years or more are not uncommon, so try to plan ahead as far as possible.
Other Ways To Get Help With Prescription Drug Costs
- Many pharmaceutical companies offer patient assistance programs to help seniors who canât otherwise afford their medications. Check with your pharmacist or doctor, or search online at RxAssist.
- The Medicine Assistance Tool matches people with medication assistance programs they may be eligible for.
- You can search for State Pharmaceutical Assistance Programs through the Medicare website. Eligibility requirements and coverage details vary, so check with your stateâs health department for details.
- Prescription discount cards are also available from non-profit organizations like NeedyMeds and the National Council on Aging.
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Rental Housing Tax Credits
The program allocates over $15.5M of federal tax credits annually to for-profit and non-profit developers for the construction or rehabilitation of affordable rental housing. All units created through the RHTC program must be rented to households at or below 60% of area median income. IHCDA ensures that the program is utilized to assist vulnerable populations through set-asides in the Qualified Action Plan .
What Programs Does Schap Offer
Parodneck Amortizing Loan Fund
This product includes low-interest repayment loans that can be used to cover the costs of home improvements. This loan is repaid monthly over a ten-year period. Borrower pays an origination and loan-processing fee of 3% of the principal amount they remain fully responsible for all applicable recording fees.
Parodneck 10-year Deferred Loan
This product includes interest-free loans, origination and loan-processing fee of 3% of the principal amount for home improvement. Upon the 10th year loan anniversary the loan is to be repaid in full.
Affordable Housing Corporation
Grant amount is leveraged with one of the above listed loans. For households with less than 112% of Area Median Income terms vary based on loan amount
Parodneck Repayment Loan Fund
This program provides low-interest repayment loans that can be used to cover the costs of home improvements. This loan is repaid monthly over a ten-year period. The loan is payable in full if the house is sold or ownership is transferred, if the borrower moves out, or upon death of the borrower. A processing fee , a $250 legal fee, and a $1,200 engineering fee are added to the loan amount at loan closing.
The Parodneck Foundation Revolving Loan Fund:
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Find The Best Mortgage For You
Most mortgage lenders have loan programs that make it possible for seniors to buy a home or refinance their current home.
However, not all lenders are experienced in issuing mortgages to retirees.
Prior to choosing a lender, make sure to ask a few screening questions. In addition to getting the lowest mortgage rates, youll want to know how the lender qualifies retirement income, as well as how they calculate qualifying income from assets.
A few questions asked upfront can help you find an experienced lender to process your application and get you the best deal.
Get Advice Before Choosing A Loan
Sometimes the elderly become prey to predatory mortgage lenders. Under the Truth in Lending Act , lenders have to disclose the cost and terms of a loan along with a lot of other information. The Real Estate Settlement and Procedures Act prohibits the payments of unearned fees and kickbacks.
According to the National Consumer Law Center, equity-rich and cash-poor elderly homeowners are a big target for unscrupulous mortgage lenders. It is recommended that before signing anything, you talk with a trusted accountant or attorney about the terms and costs any potential home purchase and new mortgage.
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Additional Resources For Seniors
Federal resources are available to provide improvements to owner-occupied homes. Seniors may benefit from repairs that address health and safety, accessibility needs, and energy consumption for your home. Please click here for more information on owner-occupied rehabilitation opportunities.
Indiana Association of Area Agencies on Aging
The Indiana Association of Area Agencies on Aging advocates for quality programs and services for older adults and persons with disabilities on behalf of Indiana’s 16 Area Agencies on Aging.
Indiana State AARP office
The Resources for Aging Individuals and Persons with Disability in Indiana is a resource guide for senior Indiana residents or for persons with disabilities to assist with identifying associations and organizations that provide services geared to the aging and disability populations.Rental Housing for Seniors
Mortgages Are Becoming More Accessible To Seniors
A few years ago, the biggest players in residential mortgages started allowing seniors to use imputed income from their retirement funds, IRAs and other retirement assets to qualify for the loan they wanted.
This policy change allows seniors to use the balances in these accounts to supplement their earnings on paper without ever taking out any money. Before this change, some seniors were turned down for loans because their debt-to-income didnt match high standards even though they had great equity in their homes, had some savings, and had good credit scores.
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Home Equity Conversion Mortgage
The HECM is similar to a reverse mortgage except that it is regulated by the Federal Housing Authority. The costs and fees are generally worked into the loan. This mortgage is regulated by the Federal Housing Administration . HECM loans have the best rate of reverse home mortgages and have more choices for payment.
Organizations Helping Senior Citizens
You dont have to be financially squeezed to be interested in dialing back the stress and uncertainty associated with aging. Help abounds in programs for seniors seeking a smoother path through earned benefits, more than 2,500 of them, according to National Council on Aging .
You just need to know where to look.
NCOA hosts a website, BenefitsCheckUp, for reviewing opportunities and categories, including medications, health care, income assistance, food and nutrition, and housing and utilities.
Dont be afraid to ask for help, says Jay Zigmont, a certified financial planner and founder of Water Valley, Miss.-based Live, Learn, Plan. Many seniors are reluctant to ask for help until things get tough. Your family, friends, and community are here and ready to help where they can. That help could be in filing for Medicare, budgeting, making food, or anything you need. Just ask.
Heres a broad primer on the leaders in assistance for seniors.
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Home Energy Assistance Program
The home energy assistance program is a federal program that provides a cash grant to eligible households to help pay a portion of home heating expenses.
Although this is a federal program, it is administered by the states, and each state is allowed to determine the amount of benefits that it will provide each eligible household, and each state can make its own eligibility rules, within very broad federal guidelines, regarding income and asset limits to qualify for HEAP assistance.
For information about the HEAP program in your state, contact yourState Office for the Aging
Senior Citizen Financial Planning
Social Security experts recommend living on 70% of your pre-retirement income. So, if you earned $50,000 a year when working, you should be comfortable living on $35,000 a year.
In reality, how much you should save for retirement depends on your lifestyle.
This is how much of your total income you should be spending on housing, transportation, food and healthcare, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Annual Expenditure Report.
- Healthcare 12.2%
These are the four greatest expenses for people over the age of 65. After the age of 75, healthcare costs eclipse transportation, taking up 15.6% of your income, while transportation drops to 13.9%.
To be clear, these are only averages. How much each person spends on each category will vary. You shouldnt set aside 17% of your budget for transportation if you live walking distance from your usual haunts. Nor should you throw budgeting to the wind for a European vacation just because you really want to see the Eiffel Tower.
If balancing your budget proves too daunting, consider working with a reputable financial advisor or nonprofit credit counseling organization. A credit counselor can review your debts and expenses to help you reach a level of financial stability.
Managing your debts is important no matter what stage of life youre in. The father of western wisdom, Socrates, said it best with his last words:
Crito, we owe a rooster to Asclepius. Please, dont forget to pay the debt.
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Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program
The SNAP program, formerly known as Food Stamps, is a federal government program to help needy persons of any age pay for food. To qualify for benefits, households must meet strict resource and income limits. However, households in which all members receive SSI or TANF benefits are automatically assumed to meet the asset and income requirements for SNAP eligibility, and no further eligibility analysis is necessary.
Households with members who are elderly or disabled are allowed to have up to $3,000 in countable assets, such as cash or money in savings, checking and investment accounts.
The value of the primary residence is excluded from countable assets, as is the value of pension and retirement accounts. The fair market value of a vehicle up to $4,650 is always excluded from countable assets by federal rules, however states have the option to exclude an even higher amount.
In addition to asset limits, recipients must also meet income limits. Households with an elderly or disabled member must have anet monthly income below a certain level in order to qualify for SNAP assistance.
The household’s net income is calculated by subtracting certain deductions from the gross monthly income. These deductions include:
– 20% of earned income
– Standard deduction of $147 for household sizes of 1-3, and $155 for a household of 4.
– Dependent care deduction when necessary to enable a family member to work, attend school, or receive training.
– Court-ordered child support payments.
State And Federal Unemployment Assistance
Laidoff workers may be eligible for unemployment income. The amount of unemployment income youre eligible to receive varies by state.
Visit your state governments website to see what unemployment assistance is available where you are. You can find contact information for your state government and agencies here.
In addition, the recentlypassed American Rescue Plan renews federal unemployment assistance .
Those who collect state unemployment assistance may also be eligible for an additional $300 per week in federal unemployment income, thanks to the new stimulus bill. This will be available until September 6, 2021.
The American Rescue Plan also includes direct payments of up to $1,400 for individuals with an adjusted gross income of $75,000 or less and couples with an AGI of $150,000 or less.
Families will receive an additional stimulus check of up to $1,400 for each qualified dependent.
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Native American Housing Programs
- Indian Housing’s Office of Native American Programs – offers housing and community development programs to ensure safe, decent, and affordable housing for Native American families
- Indian Housing Grant Programs – provide financial help for Indian tribes to develop affordable housing and housing activities on a reservation or Indian area
- Housing Improvement Program – provides home repairs, renovations, replacements, and new housing grants
- Tribal Green Building – funding resources from federal, tribal, and state agencies for tribal green building
Learn About School Meal Programs
Children from qualified households with a low income can get healthy meals or milk.
Two programs provide free or reduced-price meals at school:
Theyre enrolled in Head Start
Your children may qualify if your household income is within the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines. These guidelines are based on federal poverty guidelines.
If your income is no more than 130 percent of the poverty level, they should qualify for free meals.
If your income is no more than 185 percent of the poverty level, they should qualify for reduced-price meals.
The summer food service program is open to all children and teens 18 and under at locations around the country. Find a site near you.
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Common Myths About Reverse Mortgages
Myth: The bank will own the seniors home.Fact: Banks are not in the business of owning seniors homes. The homeowners name remains on the title and they retain ownership.
Myth: The bank can make an elderly person leave their home.Fact: HECMs are regulated by the federal government and banks are not allowed to make seniors leave their homes. In fact, the lender is more interested in having the senior stay in their home for as long as possible. Seniors are merely responsible for continuing to pay their homeowners insurance premiums and property taxes and for keeping the home in good shape.
Myth: The heirs will be responsible for repaying the loan when the senior dies. Fact: Heirs are never responsible for repaying these non-recourse loans. After the senior passes away, their estate has 30 days to sell the home for fair market value. That sale price then repays the loan. If heirs are interested in keeping the home, then the loan must be paid using another source of funds. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau , heirs will never have to pay more than the full loan balance or 95 percent of the homes appraised value, whichever is less.
Low Income Housing Tax Credit
The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program is an essential resource for creating affordable housing in the United States today. The Tax Reform Act of 1986 established the Low LIHTC program, which grants state and local LIHTC-allocating organizations the equivalent of about $8 billion in annual budget authority to grant tax credits for the acquisition, rehabilitation, or construction of new rental housing geared toward helping lower-income households.
Over 2 million affordable rental units have been built or renovated with the LIHTC program assistance since the programs launch in the mid-1990s.
Basically, state and territorial governments are given tax credits by the federal government. The credits are then provided by state housing authorities to private developers of affordable rental housing projects through a competitive bidding process.
In order to raise capital, developers typically sell the credits to private investors. Investors have a 10-year window to submit a claim for the LIHTC after the housing project is put into service or, to put it another way, made accessible to tenants.
Apartment complexes, single-family homes, townhouses, and duplexes are just a few of the many rental property types that qualify for the LIHTC.
Owners or developers of projects receiving the LIHTC consent to comply with a gross rent test and an income test for renters. Three methods exist for passing the income test:
How to Apply:
Step 1. Obtain The Application
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Is There Financial Assistance For Seniors
Surely, there are a lot of programs that provide senior people with financial assistance. As senior people have to face so many health complications, problems in movement, they need financial assistance. This assistance is given to make sure they can spend on medication, traveling, and living better.
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Advance Child Tax Credit
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the CTC was expanded under the American Rescue Plan of 2021. The IRS pre-paid half the total credit amount in monthly payments from July to December 2021. When you file your 2021 tax return, you can claim the other half of the total CTC.
Learn more about the Advance Child Tax Credit.
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Tips And Warnings For Seniors
Senior citizens should consult with a financial adviser, an attorney and their lender when considering mortgage assistance. A housing counseling agency approved by the Department of Housing and Urban Development can also help seniors sort out program options. HUD warns seniors about scams and reverse mortgage schemes. Seniors should also consult an attorney and real estate agent if approached with unsolicited purchase offers or loan modification help. Scammers may try to get struggling seniors to sell their homes for far less than market value or deed their homes over to them.
Government Financial Help For Seniors
Retirement should be a peaceful time, spent from the stresses of working life. Unfortunately, many in retirement worry about how to get help with bills, both for everyday necessities and unexpected emergencies. Thankfully, the government programs listed below provide much-needed financial help for seniors.
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Mortgages For Seniors On Social Security
Social Security income for retirement or long-term disability can typically be used to help qualify for a mortgage loan.
That means you can likely buy a house or refinance based on Social Security benefits, as long as youre currently receiving them.
SSI should be counted along with retirement funds and other liquid assets to calculate the borrowers total qualifying income.
Since SSI is typically non-taxable, it can also be grossed up. That means the lender can increase the qualifying amount by 10% to 25% and help you qualify for a larger monthly mortgage payment.
For a lender to count Social Security income toward your mortgage, it will need to be documented via an SSA Award letter or proof of current receipt.
If the borrower is drawing Social Security income from another persons work record, theyll need to provide the SSA Award letter and proof of current receipt, as well as verification that the income will continue for at least three years.