Virginia Department of Housing & Urban Development
The Virginia Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is an office of the federal government that seeks to create more accessible homeownership opportunities for people living in the United States. The Virginia HUD office enhances homeownership possibilities for low-income residents. It also offers home renting benefits to those families on a path to homeownership. These benefits offered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development help first-time and low-income homebuyers and renters. HUD also protects these groups from discrimination. The Virginia HUD also serves as a proponent to private lenders by providing protection from loan defaults in order to encourage these companies to lend to considerably at-risk homebuyers.
The Virginia HUD’s programs for homebuying benefits provides assistance to state residents of any socioeconomic background. For low-income purchasers, benefits offered by HUD in VA include access to FHA-insured loans, financial counseling for payment issues and lastly, legal protection from discrimination when trying to purchase a home. HUD homebuying programs provide mortgage loans to first-time homebuyers at reduced costs and rates. Although the FHA itself does not loan homebuying benefits directly, loans are provided by a network of private lenders that have been approved by the administration and have agreed to provide lessees with benefits such as lower down-payments and monthly payments. This network provides lessees more flexibility to obtain loans when dealing with low credit scores and other financial risks.
The FHA ensures that this VA homebuying benefit program of competitively-priced mortgage loans is effective at increasing homeownership rates by also implementing housing counseling programs to work as a supplement to the application process. All applicants for FHA homebuying loans must first complete financial management counseling courses. These have stimulated responsible ownership among participants and even extends to current participants who are noted to be at risk of missed payments.
Benefits offered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development also include legal protections against discrimination for homebuyers as a supplement to the previous two provisions. In Virginia state, the Federal Housing Board enforces discrimination law that protects individuals from discrimination in the housing market.
The Virginia Department of Housing & Urban Development also provides a path to ownership by providing home renting benefits to low-income residents within the Section 8 program. This program offers private, decent, safe and sanitary rental units, which are regulated by the office of Housing and Urban Development, to low-income Virginians. Home rental benefits are not just limited to housing projects. These homes are inspected by the local public housing agency (PHA), which ensures that the units satisfy HUD regulations. Additionally, PHAs require that Section 8 landlords do not charge more than the fair market cost of rent. This is just one Virginia home renting benefit afforded to Section 8 participants along with those afforded by Section 8 program options such as certificates and vouchers for monthly payments.
Families that receive home renting benefits under a voucher program will be required to secure housing with a landlord who agrees to offer rent under these programs. Should a renter’s current residence meet the minimum health and safety standards of the Virginia PHA, renters may be able to live within the home should the landlord agree to PHA terms. These VA housing rental benefits provide a path to ownership for low-income families, who may be able to use vouchers to purchase a home with PHA approval.
The VA HUD rental voucher program allows Section 8 participants to apply to a PHA or other local office to be placed in a Section 8 rental. The voucher’s home rental benefits allow the tenant to receive a rental discount. The voucher rental benefits for Virginia homes are offered through Section 8 depending primarily upon the median income of the selected home’s area. Voucher recipients must maintain income that is within a certain range of local median income, which is determined annually by the Virginia department of Housing and Urban Development. Renters should note that Section 8 renting benefits are considered portable benefits in that either program will work for the applicant so long as the income standards are met.