The state wants qualifying homeowners, including those in underserved communities, to know mortgage help is available through the new federally funded MyHomeCT program, recently announced by Gov. Ned Lamont.
Qualifying homeowners can receive up to $30,000 in mortgage relief with payments being made directly to the mortgage servicer or debt holder, according to Seila Mosquera-Bruno, state Department of Housing commissioner.
A focus of the state’s marketing efforts is “our community of color, to our Latinos and Black communities,” Mosquera-Bruno said. “We are doing a lot of those presentations.”
The goal of the program — funded with $123 million from the American Rescue Plan Act — is to provide relief to homeowners who were financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.There are about 20 resource centers across the state — including Wallingford — that will offer in-person assistance to homeowners.
U.S. Senator Chris Murphy held a press conference at Bridgeport Neighborhood Trust late last week to share information about MyHomeCT and an opportunity for questions and answers.
“This continues to be a state where we have an imbalance of renters versus homeowners in many of our key urban centers,” Murphy said.
He mentioned that the migration of people to Connecticut from other states is good news for the state overall, but that it also impacts property values and the cost of transitioning from renting to owning a home. He said Connecticut has to do its part building more affordable housing and ensuring that once residents own a home, they can afford to stay there.
“During the pandemic, if not for federal intervention, we would’ve had an epidemic of foreclosures in this country,” Murphy said.
Republican state Rep. Vincent Candelora, R-North Branford, questioned whether it was a little late for the program to be implemented as he is not sure there is still a correlation with COVID-19. He said the hardships of the pandemic are now different as there seem to be more issues related to gas prices, mental health and nurse shortages. He noted that if people are still having financial trouble with mortgages due to COVID-19, the program could be “worthwhile” and something many communities will be able to take advantage of.
Murphy, a Democrat, said although Republicans and Democrats worked together to ensure people stayed in their homes, the crisis is not over. Murphy stressed that many people are still struggling with debt that has piled up even after going back to work. In addition, some of the financial assistance that was offered during the pandemic has ended.
“We’ve seen in the last month or so an increase in the number of mortgage delinquencies in this country and that’s not a coincidence. It’s not surprising,” he said.
Mosquera-Bruno stressed that the goal is for MyHomeCT to get to everyone that needs it.
For more information about the program or to apply online, visit www.chfa.org/MyHomeCT or call 877-894-4111. There will be language support in the call centers.
Reporter Karla Santos can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.