Financing Residential Radon Mitigation Costs
Using the HUD 203(k) Mortgage Insurance Program to Reduce the Risk of Lung Cancer in People
The Section 203(k) mortgage financing program is the Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) primary tool for rehabilitating and improving single family homes. The program allows home buyers to finance the purchase and repair or improvement of a home using a single mortgage loan.
Reducing radon levels in a home is an improvement that can be financed through a 203(k) mortgage loan. Part of the 203(k) mortgage proceeds must be used to pay the costs of rehabilitating or improving a residential property.
- To qualify, the total cost of the eligible repairs or improvements, including fixes to reduce radon levels, must be at least $5,000.
- The 203(k) program is an important tool for expanding home ownership, revitalizing homes, neighborhoods and communities and for making homes healthier and safer for those who occupy them.
Homes eligible for 203(k) financing include:
- one to four-family dwellings that have been completed for at least one year;
- dwellings that have been demolished, provided some of the existing foundation system remains; and,
- converting a one-family dwelling into a two, three, or four-family dwelling; or, alternatively, converting an existing multi-unit dwelling into a one to four-family unit.
The 203(k) program has been used successfully by many lenders to rehabilitate properties through partnerships with state and local housing agencies and with non-profit organizations. To further help borrowers buy homes, lenders have found innovative ways to combine the 203(k) program with other financial resources like HUD’s HOPE and Community Development Block Grant Programs.
Contact an FHA-approved lender in your area for more information about HUD’s 203(k) program, or if you are interested in getting a 203(k) insured mortgage loan. To find a lender, please use HUD’s Lender List (LINK).
HUD RESOURCES. . .
HUD Resources aid in home-ownership, default / foreclosure prevention, & even offer assistance for renters. . .
Are you considering purchasing a home, refinancing to get out of a loan that is pulling you under, or are you like many others struggling to stay in your current home? Before looking anywhere else for advice, start with HUD, BECAUSE they sponsor housing counseling agencies throughout the country to provide FREE or low-cost advice on:
- buying a home,
- foreclosure avoidance,
- credit issues, or
- reverse mortgages?
&, HUD provides around the clock (24/7) advise from housing experts on the above resources, for free at 888-995-HOPE (4673), or M-F, 844-995-HOME (4663).
Still not completely sure? Here are 5 reasons to work with a housing counselor at a HUD-approved agency:
- Honest Advice:A housing counselor will help you by assessing your situation. They will talk to you about the good & the bad with an unbiased opinion, bringing background knowledge of the best practices, upholding the national Industry Standards for Homeownership Education & Counseling. In addition, they have worked with many homeowners, banks, & servicers, & this experience means they know how to keep the process moving forward, & the various programs that may help your situation.
- Explanation of bank letters: A certified housing counselor can help you dissect the terminology used in the correspondence issued by your lender & in the paperwork of the loan modification process. While a
bank or servicer may say your loan is “going into foreclosure,” they can help you understand what the actual timeline is for foreclosure & how to look out for important things like a Notice of Default.
- Your Budget:A counselor will work with you to review your budget. Counselors can provide budget counseling & calculate your housing ratios, so you understand your ability to afford your mortgage & explain how these same ratios could impact your eligibility for assistance. For example, a counselor can review your income vs. your housing expenses & explain to you how that will impact your eligibility for a program like VHDA’s Down Payment Assistance (DPA).
- Communication with your Bank or Servicer:Have you submitted paperwork to your bank or servicer multiple times, or called your designated representative but were not able to speak to them? While these types of issues can’t be completely eliminated, a certified counselor may have a reliable contact with your lender or have an efficient method of submitting your documents which can help smooth out some of the bumps along the way during the lender’s review.
- Resources:Housing Counselors are able to provide you with resources, such as the VHDA Loss Mitigation program. Studies have shown that with the help of a HUD-certified counselor:
- nearly 70 percent of those counseled obtained a mortgage remedy to retain their home;
- 56 percent cured their defaults and became current on their mortgages; &
- 35 percent of participants became homeowners within 18 months of pre-purchase counseling.
Whether a first-time home-buyer or facing foreclosure, be sure to find a HUD Approved Housing Counselor to learn more on the variety of housing counseling services and financial educational programs available to help consumers obtain and keep their piece of
the American Dream.