State and New Castle County to put $40 million toward housing relief
Delawareans struggling to pay rent or mortgage payments because of the COVID-19 pandemic will get some help soon.
Gov. John Carney announced this week the Delaware Housing Assistance Program is reopening and more funding is headed to the Delaware Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program to assist those unemployed or not working the hours they did before COVID-19 to help them pay their mortgage or rent.
Carney says the goal is to keep families in their homes.
“We know many Delawareans continue to face a very challenging time as they struggle with the economic effects of the COVID-19 crisis. By reopening the rental assistance program and providing similar financial assistance to homeowners, we hope to help more Delaware families stay in their homes both during and after the pandemic,” said Carney.
The state and New Castle County are contributing $40 million in CARES Act funding to the programs for eligible residents with each entity allocating $20 million.
Eligible renters and homeowners can apply for up to $5,000 in relief.
DSHA Director Anas Ben Addi explains how those eligible will get the relief funding.
"Both programs will not send assistance directly to the applicants. So no tenants, no mortgage holder will get assistance. It will either go to the landlord or to the service or the bank, said Ben Addi. "We will ask for the information and the balances directly from either your landlord or your servicer, and the checks will be sent or wired to your landlord and servicer."
New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer says it is an effective and efficient use of funding.
"This is a huge benefit, and it enables us to get resources to the people of our county with minimal administrative expense because, quite frankly, DSHA, the State Housing Authority has years of experience doing this, and so it enables us to put more and more of the taxpayers money to work for this emergency funding," said Meyer.
To be eligible for DE MAP homeowners must also have a maximum household income post-pandemic at or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income for the county in which they reside.
In Kent and Sussex counties the maximum household income limit is $65,520, and in New Castle County the limit is $77,280.
To be eligible for DE HAP, applicants must reside in Delaware and have a maximum household income post-pandemic at or below 60 percent of the Area Median Income for the county in which they reside.
To check if you’re eligible for either program, you can go to the Delaware State Housing Authority’s website.