The federally funded programs offer new help to homeowners who may have been disappointed by other federal government assistance programs.
The Michigan State Housing Development Authority was the first to launch its program, which started July 12. It has $280 million to distribute and has already approved at least 70 applications.
On offer are:
• Mortgage subsidies of up to $9,000 for unemployed homeowners.
• Grants of up to $5,000 for homeowners who need to make up missed payments.
• Up to $10,000 in principal reduction, on a lender-matching basis, for homeowners who've suffered a loss of income.
The program has no income restrictions, but is limited to homeowners whose mortgage is held by a participating lender. On that list are more than 100 of the state's own banks and credit unions, but does not include any of the big national names such as Wells Fargo, Chase or Bank of America.
The Arizona Department of Housing has drawn up a four-page proposal that summarizes the guiding principals and recommendations for its program, "Save My Home AZ." The program has yet to launch, but will distribute $125 million to homeowners in the state.
The Florida Housing Finance Corp. expects to hand out $656.8 million, which will go to unemployed homeowners who need help to make their mortgage payments or to catch up on payments they've missed. The program is scheduled to start in Lee County on a pilot basis in mid-October. A statewide rollout is tentatively planned for February 2011.
Other states and localities that will receive a piece of the action include California (discussed in more detail in an earlier blog post, "California to pay mortgages"), Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee and Washington, D.C.
The numbers of recipients are likely to be small, perhaps on the order of 10,000 or 20,000 people in the larger states.
If you've applied for relief through a state program, do you have a story to share?