Shaun Donovan, secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), announced that HUD will speed federal disaster assistance to Colorado as the state deals with the ongoing High Park and Waldo Canyon wildfires.
President Obama issued a disaster declaration for El Paso and Larimer counties. The declaration allows HUD to offer foreclosure relief and other assistance to certain families living in these counties.
- Offering the state of Colorado and other entitlement communities the ability to re-allocate existing federal resources toward disaster relief: HUD's Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and HOME programs give the state and communities the flexibility to redirect millions of dollars to address critical needs, including housing and services for disaster victims. HUD is contacting state and local officials to explore streamlining the CDBG and HOME programs in order to expedite the repair and replacement of damaged housing;
- Granting immediate foreclosure relief: HUD granted a 90-day moratorium on foreclosures and forbearance on foreclosures of Federal Housing Administration (FHA)-insured home mortgages;
- Making mortgage insurance available: HUD's Sec. 203(h) program provides FHA insurance to disaster victims who have lost their homes and are facing the daunting task of rebuilding or buying another home. Borrowers from participating FHA-approved lenders are eligible for 100 percent financing, including closing costs;
- Making insurance available for both mortgages and home rehabilitation: HUD's Sec. 203(k) loan program enables those who have lost their homes to finance the purchase or refinance of a house along with its repair through a single mortgage. It also allows homeowners who have damaged houses to finance the rehabilitation of their existing single-family home; and
- Offering Sec. 108 loan guarantee assistance: HUD will offer state and local governments federally guaranteed loans for housing rehabilitation, economic development, and repair of public infrastructure.
In addition, HUD said it will share information with FEMA and the state on housing providers that may have available units in the impacted counties. This includes public housing agencies and multifamily owners.
The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority has also prepared a list of disaster resources that can be found at: http://www.chfainfo.com/disaster_resources/.