LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan Veterans Homeownership Assistance Program (MiVHAP) has approved more than $1 million in grants to struggling military and veteran homeowners impacted by the foreclosure crisis. Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency Director Jeff Barnes says MiVHAP launched in May with a total of $5 million available for grants and will continue until those funds are depleted. To date, MiVHAP has helped 154 homeowners in 43 counties across the state.
“The response to MiVHAP has been tremendous, which shows just how devastating the foreclosure crisis has been for our state’s veterans and military personnel,” said Barnes. “I wish this fund weren’t needed, but I am very happy that it has been able to help so many Michigan servicemen and women and their families keep and maintain their homes, as well as assist those who had already lost their homes get their finances back on track.”
MiVHAP provides financial assistance to Michigan military service members, veterans and their families who have struggled with the consequences of the mortgage foreclosure crisis. The program is open to military service members: Active, Reserve, Air and Army National Guard, and honorably discharged veterans living or having lived in a home in Michigan since 2006 and suffering hardship due to the foreclosure crisis. Surviving spouses of Michigan military service members whose death occurred in combat since 2006 and currently face foreclosure challenges may also be eligible for financial assistance.
“This program, with its far reaching and diverse ability to review each service member’s or veteran’s situation and provide grants that uniquely resolve serious issues, is making a significant contribution to the quality of life for our military members and their families in Michigan,” said Anne Dutcher, Michigan Veterans Trust Fund administrator. “Not only are we able to help military homeowners keep and maintain their homes, we are also able to help those who had already lost their homes get back on the path to financial stability. The positive impacts these grants have had on their recipients is immeasurable.”
MiVHAP is administered by the Michigan Veterans Trust Fund (MVTF) state office staff, though it is a separate program from the MVTF. Grants are awarded on a first-come, first served basis and will continue to be made until the money runs out. Grants that are awarded are sent directly to vendors, including lenders or government entities owed back taxes. Each grant is based on individual circumstances of an application, but priority is given to requests seeking to avoid mortgage defaults, foreclosure and property tax foreclosure.
MiVHAP was made possible by the National Mortgage Settlement, which addressed allegations of faulty foreclosure processes and poor servicing of mortgages that harmed Michigan homeowners. Michigan’s Attorney General targeted $5 million of the funds to be used strictly for veterans and service members.
How to Apply for MiVHAP Grants:
Military service members and veterans interested in applying for MiVHAP grants can request applications and obtain more information by calling 517-284-5296 or by visiting the MiVHAP website at http://1.usa.gov/11gkIzP. Requests by mail may be sent to: Michigan Veterans Trust Fund, MiVHAP, P.O. Box 30104, Lansing, MI 48909. Completed applications may also be faxed to 517-284-5297.
For more information, contact Veronica LaDuke, MVAA, 517-284-5243 or 517-256-7843 (cell).