Florida’s Homeowner Assistance Fund Awards Relief to Almost 20,000 Homeowners

At the end of last week, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) announced the Homeowner Assistance Fund program has awarded nearly $434 million in relief to 19,919 Florida homeowners, with more than $13.8 million awarded last week alone.

RESOURCES FOR APPLICANTS

Floridians who are seeking assistance with the status of their applications should be aware of scams, including individuals who ask for cash in exchange for assistance or access to your account information. We encourage those who have questions regarding their funding to call the Homeowner Assistance Fund Customer Assistance Center at 833-987-8997.

Florida HAF’s Customer Assistance Center has answered more than 180,000 incoming calls, assisting Floridians with their questions. Also, Florida HAF’s Customer Assistance Center has made more than 32,000 outbound calls to respond to inquiries and ensure homeowners were able to find the link sent to them and access their application so they could complete their application. DEO remains committed to expediting relief to the state’s most vulnerable homeowners until available funding is exhausted and working closely with nearly 2,600 mortgage lenders and service providers to ensure payments are applied to homeowners’ accounts timely and accurately.

HAF applicants can call 833-987-8997 Monday-Thursday: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Eastern Time, to receive assistance over the phone.

Additional resources for applicants are available at www.FLHomeownerAssistance.org.

For Florida homeowners with unmet needs, other resources are available to assist eligible individuals with utility bills and other homeowner expenses through the Community Services Block Grant, the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, and the Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program.

PREVIOUS PROGRAM UPDATES

On February 9, 2022, DEO received approval of the state of Florida’s Homeowner Assistance Fund Needs Assessment and Plan from the United States Department of the Treasury (U.S. Treasury) to implement the state’s HAF program for eligible homeowners. The Needs Assessment and Plan was submitted to the U.S. Treasury on August 20, 2021.

Prior to the approval of the state’s HAF Needs Assessment and Plan, DEO began utilizing 10 percent of the allocated funding to launch the Homeowner Assistance Fund Pilot Program in November 2021, in accordance with U.S. Treasury guidance. The state of Florida was one of 12 states to proactively launch a HAF Pilot Program while waiting for the U.S. Treasury to approve its Needs Assessment and Plan.

On February 28, 2022, DEO initiated Phase 2 of the HAF program by opening registration for prospective applicants. Applicants determined eligible through the registration process are currently receiving unique application links by email to apply for up to $50,000 in assistance.

On June 24, 2022, DEO reached a key milestone – awarding more than $100 million to assist Florida’s vulnerable homeowners.

On July 22, 2022, DEO announced more than $213 million in relief has been awarded to Floridians through the state’s Homeowner Assistance Fund.

On July 30, 2022, DEO closed program registration to assist homeowners who have already completed their registration or are currently applying for assistance through the program.

On August 26, 2022, DEO closed the program application to assist homeowners who have applied for assistance through the program.

On September 27, 2022, DEO closed the in-person Customer Assistance Centers.
About HAF

Florida’s Homeowner Assistance Fund is designed to mitigate financial hardships associated with the COVID-19 pandemic by preventing homeowners’ mortgage delinquencies, defaults, foreclosures, and displacements, as well as by providing assistance with home energy services, internet, property and/or flood insurance, property taxes, and homeowner or condominium association fees. Eligible Florida homeowners may receive up to $50,000 in assistance.

The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity combines the state’s economic, workforce, and community development efforts, expediting economic development projects to fuel job creation in competitive communities and promote economic resiliency.

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