We’re less than a month out from the final wave of new child tax credit checks, but there are also plenty of other ways people can get paid right now, too. We’ve had new stimulus payments this year (including standalone checks as well as recurring ones). Those have come from the federal level, for everyone, as well as from some individual states. But there are plenty of other stimulus-related benefits, too, outside of all those checks. Including some that ordinary Americans might not even know about.
The Homeowners Assistance Fund offers one such benefit. In short, this $10 billion fund stems from the $1.9 trillion stimulus law from earlier this year. It gives state governments power to decide how they want to help homeowners with various expenses. Including those who live in areas with “persistent poverty.” Or if those homeowners belong to a group that’s historically faced discrimination.
Homeowner Assistance Fund
The idea here is that there’s a pot of money available to help homeowners struggling with things like mortgage payments as well as taxes, association dues, and other payments associated with homeownership. Even the payment of things like utility bills and insurance costs. “The American Rescue Plan provides nearly $10 billion for states, territories, and Tribes to provide relief for our country’s most vulnerable homeowners,” a fact sheet from the Treasury Department explains.
This isn’t something that’s coming directly to you from the federal government, though.
Individual states submit plans for how they want to parcel out funds for the program. Something that New York State became the first to get final approval for this month. In a statement, Gov. Kathy Hochul said her state is distributing almost $539 million to homeowners “at the greatest risk of foreclosure or displacement.”
Alys Cohen, a staff attorney with the National Consumer Law Center, told The New York Times that this is important, especially with a new wave of foreclosures likely to unfold next year. And with other programs from this year, like a mortgage payment forbearance program, now at an end for struggling homeowners.
New stimulus payments coming
As an example of what this program can provide, New York will reportedly offer as much as $50,000. That would go toward anything from homeowners’ mortgage payments to utilities, delinquent property taxes, and more. Homeowners in Connecticut, meanwhile, could get up to $20,000, and in Illinois up to $30,000.
State housing programs are distributing the money. More detail about the fund, with its potential for new stimulus payments, is available here.
On a related note, we should also add a word here about a different kind of stimulus benefit. Remember the upcoming final child tax credit check for 2021 we mentioned?
Recipients have until November 29 to make changes reflected on that final check, coming December 15. Visit the Child Tax Credit Update Portal, at IRS.gov/childtaxcredit2021. There, families can switch from getting a paper check to direct deposit, update their mailing address, and stop the payments. Through that portal, recipients can also change the account where their payment is direct deposited. And reflect significant changes in their income that could potentially raise or lower their monthly payments.