Ohio Slow To Give Federal Money To Homeowners After Financial Crisis

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By Elizabeth Miller 

A new report from the US Treasury Department says Ohio was the slowest to pass out federal money to struggling homeowners in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.  Treasury compared 19 states that gave homeowners funds to help pay or modify their mortgage payments under a program started in 2010. 

The federal government gave $570 million dollars to the Ohio Housing Finance Agency.  They relied on local organizations to pass the money onto Ohio residents so they could get back on their feet with their home loan payments.  According to a Treasury report released today, Ohioans seeking help with past-due payments waited an average of 9 months to receive any of that.  It took some unemployed homeowners as long as two years to get help.

Kate Carden from the Cleveland Housing Network says that for some, that wait is too long.  

"So sometimes, if the delay was long enough, it would actually knock folks out of the program so they were no longer eligible because then their delinquent balance was so high," said Carden.

It took other states like California a little more than 3 months to get money to their residents.  The Ohio Housing Finance Agency says the wait times sometimes dragged out because of difficulties collecting the necessary paperwork from the homeowner and the mortgage company.  An official with the agency says once the paperwork was completed, it took an average of 60 days to get the money to homeowners. 

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