The Homeowners’ Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program (HEMAP) is designed to help Pennsylvania homeowners who, because of circumstances they cannot control, are unable to make mortgage payments and are in danger of losing their homes to foreclosure. It was created by Act 91 of 1983 to prevent homelessness in our state and allow homeowners to seek the alternate employment, training, or education they need to resume mortgage payments. HEMAP funds are loaned to the homeowner to assure steady mortgage payments and do not apply to FHA Title II mortgages. The program is funded by State appropriations and the repayment of existing HEMAP loans.
When approved for a HEMAP assistance, a loan is created by taking a mortgage on the property in danger of foreclosure. This brings delinquent payments current. Then, the homeowner receives one of two types of assistance:
- Non–continuing mortgage assistance loan – The mortgage is brought current to a specified date and the homeowner is responsible for making all subsequent monthly mortgage payments to their lender along with a monthly payment to HEMAP. The homeowner may also be required to make a cash contribution toward the mortgage delinquency at the time the HEMAP loan closes.
- Continuing mortgage assistance loan – The mortgage is brought current to a specified date and then HEMAP subsidizes their monthly mortgage payment to their lender.
All HEMAP loans are limited to a maximum of 24/36 months from the date of delinquency or $60,000, whichever comes first. Additionally, loan recipients are required to pay 35/40% of their net monthly income toward their total housing expenses, which include utility costs, escrows, insurance expenses, and real property taxes. By law, the minimum monthly contribution to HEMAP is $25 per mortgage assisted.
Who Qualifies for a HEMAP Loan?
- A homeowner who is at least 60 days delinquent on their mortgage and has received an Act 91 Notice from their lender
- A homeowner with a favorable mortgage credit history prior to delinquency within the past five years
- A homeowner suffering financial difficulty due to circumstances beyond their control
- A homeowner who could reasonably expect to resume full mortgage payments within 24 or 36 months, and pay the mortgage in full by maturity
- One- or two-family residences in PA that are owner-occupied
2015 Interest Rate
Interest is charged when household income requires repayment on the 35/40% calculation listed above. If income does not require repayment, the interest will not be charged and will be adjusted back to nine percent. The homeowner will still be required to pay the minimum monthly payment of $25. The Agency has determined that the rate of interest for HEMAP loans closed during calendar year 2015 will be 4.75%.
To begin the HEMAP application process, you’ll need a face-to-face meeting with a designated counseling agency within 33 days of the date on your Act 91 Notice. Within 30 days of that meeting, the agency will forward the application to HEMAP for processing.
For more information about the HEMAP program, click here.