Wyoming Homeowner Assistance Fund Program Opens Applications for Forward Mortgage Payments

Wyoming Homeowner Assistance Fund Program Opens Applications for Forward Mortgage Payments

CHEYENNE — The Wyoming Homeowner Assistance Fund (HAF) Program is now accepting applications to assist eligible homeowners with up to three months of consecutive forward mortgage payments. 

“We have heard from many Wyomingites that the HAF Program has missed helping a segment of homeowners who pay their mortgage first but are significantly struggling to pay groceries, utilities and other bills,” Department of Family Services Director Korin Schmidt said. “Adding forward mortgage payments to the HAF Program gives Wyoming homeowners temporary relief to get caught up with the rest of their bills.”

Wyoming received $50 million from the U.S. Department of the Treasury for its HAF Program, which focuses on helping homeowners stay in their homes. Since its launch in May 2022, the HAF Program has distributed an estimated 16% of the funding available to Wyoming homeowners. 

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“We have worked hard with mortgage lenders to promote the program and continue to do so, but we have still seen low application numbers,” Schmidt said. “Wyoming’s number of mortgage delinquencies is low. Our mortgage partners estimate under 5,000 for the entire state, and many of those are working with their lenders on more long term solutions that may not be available to them if they accept HAF dollars. Mortgage servicers are able to offer their loan holders a variety of options, so we have seen a decrease in applications for mortgage delinquencies. This new program will allow us to help Wyoming homeowners who are struggling to make ends meet but have kept their mortgage current.” 

As of Feb. 23, 2023, the HAF Program has helped 976 Wyoming homeowners with $8 million in assistance paid. Of those payments, $7.7 million went to delinquent mortgages while $270K covered unpaid utility bills, $71K in unpaid property taxes, $5K for unpaid homeowners insurance and $21K for unpaid homeowner association dues.

Under the HAF Program, eligible homeowners can receive up to $17,000 in assistance as a one-time award to pay for past due payments and up to three consecutive months of forward mortgage payments. The award is directly paid to a servicer or vendor on behalf of an eligible homeowner. 

The HAF Program now covers the following:

  • MORTGAGE DELINQUENCY: Financial assistance to help reinstate a mortgage or to pay other housing-related costs related to a period of forbearance, delinquency, or default. 
  • FORWARD MORTGAGE PAYMENTS: Up to three (3) consecutive months of forward mortgage payments. Delinquencies will be prioritized over forward mortgage payments.
  • PAST DUE UTILITY PAYMENTS: Electricity, energy costs (fuel, oil & propane), water and sewer. (Internet costs are not an eligible expense.)
  • PAST DUE HOUSING-RELATED BILLS: Property taxes, homeowners insurance or homeowner association dues.

The application is only available online at dfs.wyo.gov/haf. For application assistance, please contact the call center toll-free at 1-888-WYO-HAFP (1-888-996-4237) during the hours of 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.  The HAF Program is a temporary federally funded assistance fund. Don’t wait to apply. Funds are limited.

Eligibility criteria include:

  • Must not have received a previous HAF award. This is a one-time award. Any eligible clients who received HAF payments in the past cannot apply.
  • Must own a property in Wyoming, including those on the Wind River Reservation.
  • Must currently occupy the property as the primary residence.
  • Must have a total annual household income at or below 150% of the area median income. 
  • Must have experienced a COVID-related financial hardship after January 21, 2020 
  • If applying for mortgage assistance, the loan must be the first lien on the property, and the homeowner must not intend to sell the property within six months of receiving assistance.