The District of Columbia Housing Finance Agency’s DC Mortgage Assistance Program (DC MAP) is now providing mortgage relief to homeowners affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Helping Washingtonians maintain their status as homeowners is as important to the agency as creating new homeowners. As businesses in the Washington, D.C. region have had to close and/or reduce staff due to the effects of COVID-19, DCHFA recognized an opportunity to help D.C. residents remain in their homes.
“DCHFA is committed to helping D.C. homeowners sustain during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Christopher E. Donald, interim executive director, DCHFA. “With more than 100 calls in the first couple weeks of re-launching the program, we saw just how great the need for assistance is right now. Our goal at the agency is to help as many homeowners as possible.”
Through DC MAP COVID-19, qualified borrowers can earn up to $5,000 in assistance per month for up to six months to put toward their mortgage. The assistance will be made to qualified homeowners in the form of a zero-interest recourse loan, secured by a deed of trust. Qualified borrowers must be applying for assistance on his or her primary residence and the residence must be located in the District of Columbia; must be current as of the March 1, 2020 payment; must be able to document income affected by COVID-19; must be the borrower on the home loan, not just a member of the household; and, must show proof that the borrower is not eligible for forbearance or other types of relief offered through the loan servicer.
Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the relaunch of DC MAP in a press release in early August. “We know that for many DC families, keeping up with their monthly mortgage payments has been a tremendous struggle during these unprecedented times,” said Mayor Bowser in the release. “By repurposing this existing assistance program, we can provide homeowners with some peace of mind and help relieve some of the financial burden during this public health emergency.”
DCHFA originally launched DC MAP in 2019 to provide assistance to furloughed federal government employees during the partial government shutdown. DC MAP was a pilot program designed to provide mortgage support during an unanticipated financial hardship. Through setting up this pilot, DCHFA created a defensive program structure that guided the development of the additional assistance component encompassing COVID-19 and homeownership in the District.
District homeowners seeking assistance through DC MAP COVID-19 should call 1-833-429-0537 to begin the application process. Questions regarding DC MAP COVID-19 relief can be emailed to DCMAP@dchfa. org. For more information about borrower requirements and loan terms, visit www.dchfa.org.