Housing Counseling in Virginia
Before purchasing a HUD home, applicants must first receive housing counseling in Virginia to learn about homeownership before committing to the investment. Additionally, these housing counseling services must be offered to those already participating in an FHA loan program as a method of resolving delinquent payments should the need arise. This program allows for homebuyers and current participants of FHA loans to talk to a housing counselor who will provide both of these groups with information on how to buy a home, avoid default, avoid foreclosure and also help them resolve credit issues and even apply for reverse mortgages. Housing counseling agencies are central to Virginia’s efforts to increase homeownership among state residents and generally make the investment available to everyone, regardless of socioeconomic background. Participants should note that this service is intended to be a free service to all residents, with some limitations. VA home buying counseling agencies may be permitted to charge for services related to pre-purchase, rentals and non-delinquent counseling.
Types of Housing Counseling in Virginia
Considering that there are many housing counseling agencies in VA and throughout the rest of the United States, there are also a significant number of different counseling types that are applicable to a variety of situations. Specifically, housing counseling programs exist for homelessness, foreclosure avoidance, reverse mortgages and veteran housing. These are the largest housing issues that the FHA has highlighted and have a significant number of resources available to them. You may benefit from receiving Virginia housing counseling with one of the following programs:
Housing Counseling for Homelessness
Although this program is not specifically a Virginia homebuying counseling program, it deals with the issue of homelessness in the state of Virginia in order to reduce homelessness and assist those who are currently without a home to find resources. These housing resources are primarily shelters wherein homeless individuals may be able to receive meals, showers, and other necessities.
Foreclosure Avoidance Housing Counseling
These VA housing counseling services work to ensure that current participants in FHA loan programs stay housed and regular on mortgage payments. One large issue with this group is an inability to stay regular and must therefore avoid foreclosure due to non-payment. These home counseling programs educate current participants on solutions that may be available to them in order to avoid foreclosure and may connect residents to funds via the Virginia Foreclosure Trust Fund to help make payments.
Housing Counseling for Reverse Mortgage
For senior citizens participating in an FHA loan program, it may be necessary to talk to a housing counselor about a reverse mortgage to maintain ownership of a home. Counseling agencies that specialize in this area work with the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) type, which is the only reverse mortgage that is insured by the US government’s FHA. Those participants 62 years of age or older who have also paid off their mortgage or a considerable amount are eligible to participate in this program.
Housing Counseling for Veterans
In order to provide housing counseling services to US military veterans, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has partnered with the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to establish the HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing Program (HUD-VASH). This Virginia housing counseling program provides counseling to veterans across the United States in an effort to help place homeless veterans in permanent homes, provide warm meals and distribute clothing as well as job training opportunities to reduce the rates of veteran homelessness.
To learn more about Virginia housing counseling services, you can download our complimentary guide today.
Eligibility for Housing Counseling in Virginia
There is a wide variety of home buying counseling services and other resources provided by counseling agencies. For some homebuyer counseling services in VA, applicants must have an FHA loan. However, the eligibility criteria for housing counseling agencies will depend on what type of housing counseling service the applicant requires.
A current FHA loan participant will receive a notification to talk to a housing counselor in Virginia should he or she be deemed unable to make payments or unable to correct a delinquency within a reasonable amount of time. This notification will also be served should the participant have faced an involuntary loss of income through unemployment, self-employment, divorce or death of a breadwinner. Inability to make payments will also be considered should there instead be a significant increase in basic expenses. This housing counseling notification will arrive about a month after the account becomes delinquent, but should the participant correct the problem within this timeframe, he or she will no longer be required to complete counseling. Learn more about home buying counseling by downloading our complimentary guide.