April 03, 2019
HUD’s Recommendations During the Government Shutdown
During the recent partial Federal government shutdown, a large swath of the American population found itself affected by the closure of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), since around 95% of the agency’s staff was put on furlough. During this longest partial shutdown in American history, a number of the services HUD offers were put on hold, resulting in, by some estimates, more than a million people being negatively affected. Luckily, in order to limit the downsides to its departmental absence, HUD issued a Contingency Plan prior to the shutdown, allowing market players to know which services would and would not be available. Among the plans and recommendations HUD made:
According to that Contingency Plan, single-family home loans would continue to be endorsed (except for reverse mortgage loans and Title I loans) as they were funded under multi-year appropriations. But any loans requiring assessment by an FHA underwriter would be unavailable.
The tenant-based rental assistance HUD provides was set to be disbursed despite the shutdown; but any funding process that would have required active participation by HUD staff was to go unprocessed. Nor would tenant protection vouchers for multifamily actions and public housing be processed.
Project-based rental assistance was to remain viable so long as the funds could be drawn from advanced appropriations, on an as-needed basis.
Where public housing was concerned, HUD would not be able to fund local public housing agencies (PHAs), though they are not technically under its direct auspices. Where any issues arose with public housing, petitioners were requested to contact these PHAs directly.
Homelessness assistance grants—which include supportive housing for veterans and for people with AIDS—continued to be funded.
And, where HOME, CDBG and other block grants had already been obligated, their funding would continue unabated, as these draw money from multi-year appropriations.
HUD requested of property managers and owners who provide housing under the Section 202 Housing for the Elderly program that they tap their reserve funds to cover the gap, though this might mean putting off repairs and suspending the provision of services like after-school care and transportation.
Now that the partial shutdown has ended, HUD and FHA assistance is secure and available once again, including for loan programs. Now is the time to buy that new home. When you do, the title insurance policies we connect you with here at Topouzis & Associates, P.C., provide peace of mind that your new property will not bring along any nasty surprises. Whether you live in Providence, Rhode Island; Cambridge, Massachusetts; or Boca Raton, Florida, feel free to contact us for more information.