Being a homeowner comes with a sometimes overwhelming amount of responsibility. Especially as new homeowners’ transition from being renters, there are quite a few significant changes they might experience. In addition to having greater responsibility (taxes, maintenance, etc.), being a homeowner can be expensive. Home repairs can mount quickly, especially if you’re living in a house that is older or was not cared for well by the previous tenants. The question many homeowners might ask themselves is what to do if they cannot afford necessary repairs. Some repairs are more critical (and mandatory) than others, so what steps should you take if you find yourself unable to pay for a home repair in Massachusetts?
What kinds of home repairs qualify?
When thinking about home repairs and potentially needing financial assistance, usually, the conversation is around repairs that directly correlate to the safety of the homeowners and the surrounding area. Issues regarding lead paint, septic systems, or other time-sensitive, necessary repairs are the ones that receive the highest priority. It may seem like an option for some of these to wait or put off the work, but in some cases, that can only make the situation worse down the line.
What is the reason for your situation?
When figuring out what resources are available to you if you require financial assistance for a home repair, your first steps should be to determine why you need the service. Do you need assistance due to a job loss or unforeseen event? Knowing the exact cause of your situation will help you figure out where you need to start and help if you reach out for advice from a real estate agent.
Depending on your situation, you may qualify for state assistance, so make sure you have clear documentation and information about your financial situation. Whether you are looking for state assistance or another program, you’ll want to have all your information in one spot.
Massachusetts Assistance Programs You Must Know About
Many states, including Massachusetts, offer assistance programs for those who may need it when faced with necessary home repairs. Notably, there are programs that provide financial assistance to particular demographics. If the homeowners qualify as low-income, have a disability, or are elderly, you may be eligible for state assistance. Additionally, if the homeowner is a veteran who meets specific qualifications or lives in a rural, low-income area, you may also qualify for some of the resources available.
Here are the programs that the state of Massachusetts provides its residents, as listed on the US Department of Housing and Urban Development’s website:
- MassHousing – home improvement, septic system repair, and lead paint removal loans
- Habitat for Humanity – through volunteer labor, builds houses for families in need
- Habitat for Humanity ReStores – discounted used and surplus building materials
- Rebuilding Together, Inc. – assists low-income, elderly and disabled homeowners with home repairs
- Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission – home modification loan program for persons with disabilities
- Veterans Affairs Regional Loan Center – loans and grants to qualifying veterans to adapt existing dwelling to meet specific needs
- USDA Rural Development Office – home improvement loans and grants to low-income homeowners in rural areas
- Department of Public Health – lead poisoning prevention program
- Make your home more energy efficient
Additionally, they offer more specific programs based on the city or town in which you live, so be sure to check your area for any additional resources that might be available to you
What other options are available?
Knowing where to start can feel overwhelming, especially in a situation that involves potentially time-sensitive repairs and financial difficulties. If you don’t qualify for any of the above programs, there are still other steps you can take. For example, you may be eligible for a home improvement loan or refinance your house in order to be able to make payments for repairs. While these options can seem financially burdensome, they might just be your ticket out of a tricky situation.
Each situation is unique, which is why we recommend you reach out for advice on what steps work best for you and your family. Additionally, you may be able to apply for a grant or a program that was not explicitly listed for the state of Massachusetts. There are numerous organizations that work to assist homeowners who need financial assistance, and one of these might just be the perfect fit for your situation.
We’re Here to Help
If you still have questions regarding your specific situation, we highly encourage you to reach out to us for more guidance and information. We know that homeownership can be stressful, especially when you are dealing with financial struggles or home repairs that need your immediate attention. Dealing with a trusted real estate agent who is an expert in your options can allow you to have support as you navigate your next steps.
Our licensed real estate consultants will be able to answer any questions you may have regarding the options that may be available to you. Navigating the forms or conversations with the bank about what you need to do to have those necessary repairs made to your home can feel daunting. Reach out to us for more information on how we can work with you to make this a more straightforward and smooth process. We’re here to help!
To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation, call us at 781-309-7085 or get in touch with us by clicking here.