The Department of Housing and Urban Development has announced a Fair Housing agreement with the City Of Houston designed to enhance hurricane recovery efforts there.
According to a press release at the FHA/HUD official site, HUD and the city reached, “a joint agreement designed to expand housing choice and mobility for lower income residents, including those experiencing homelessness and victims of Hurricane Harvey.”
The agreement includes a new requirement for the City of Houston to adopt “multifamily priorities and a policy for objectively evaluating federally supported affordable housing developments in all areas of Houston; to seek to invest additional funds in homeless assistance programs, and; to encourage more landlord participation in Houston’s housing voucher program”.
“Today, we announce a positive agreement that works to expand housing options for lower income Houston residents, especially in neighborhoods with better performing schools and higher paying jobs,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson, who was quoted in the press release.
Carson adds, “We’re pleased the City is committed to making sure taxpayer-supported affordable housing development be supported and encouraged in a fair and inclusive manner.”
Affordable housing, low-income housing, and help for the city’s homeless population are all part of the new initiative, which is meant to supplement other, already-existing options for Houston residents including FHA 203 rehab loan options (the 203(k) FHA rehab loan and the for-disasters-only FHA 203(h) rehab loan.
The homelessness issue, in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, is an important one for Houston. Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said in the HUD press release, “The City of Houston is pleased with the agreement.”
“We appreciate the commendation HUD provides with it for programs we already have under way and the guidance it offers as we work to build a city of complete communities where all residents can find quality homes in neighborhoods with the economic and educational opportunities necessary for creating success in life.”
The HUD press release announces measures to help the homeless community in Houston including “…a combined nearly $3 million from various sources to support individuals and families experiencing homelessness. In addition, the City will work to secure $2 million in disaster assistance to match $2 million in private funding to HHA to help victims of Hurricane Harvey who became homeless”.
FHA borrowers in Houston who were affected by Hurricane Harvey still have options for relief. If you aren’t sure what is available to you in the wake of a federally-declared natural disaster, speak to your loan officer to explore FHA rehab loan options, loan forbearance, or what to do if your forbearance period is about to end.