Mortgage relief program draws 10,737 applications in Alaska

A federally funded mortgage relief program to help homeowners hurt financially by the pandemic drew 10,737 applications in Alaska, with 43 from Wrangell.

The state received $50 million in federal funds under a nationwide program to help homeowners who lost their jobs or income due to COVID-19 shutdowns or cutbacks. The Alaska Housing Finance Corp. is administering the statewide program, reviewing the applications to ensure people meet the income loss and other criteria in preparation to start disbursing aid.

The 10,737 applications represent about one in nine of the almost 100,000 homeowners in Alaska with a mortgage, according to the housing finance agency.

The aid can go toward eligible homeowners’ monthly mortgage payments, and may also be applied to current and past-due property taxes, insurance premiums and utility bills. The application period closed April 4.

In addition to the mortgage relief program, the state housing agency had distributed almost $260 million in pandemic relief aid to more than 26,000 rental households across Alaska as of last Friday. Of that total, $530,000 went to renters in Wrangell under the federally financed program to help tenants with rent and utilities.

Rent and utility assistance under the program has gone to 80 Wrangell households.

The total of 123 Wrangell households to receive rental assistance or apply for mortgage relief represents about 12% of the households in the community.


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