Collect, convert (if necessary) and click “upload.”
It’s now that easy to submit documents for your Keep Your Home California application.
Keep Your Home California recently established a document upload system, providing homeowners with the ability to send the necessary paperwork, such as bank statements and mortgage documents, through a secure website.
It’s a big change for the free mortgage-assistance program, which has accepted documents from homeowners by fax or mail since starting in February 2011.
Under the new document upload service, homeowners can send in PDF documents on a secure website. In fact, each applicant will have a unique website address. Data security is of the utmost importance to Keep Your Home California and this new system provides a secure, yet user-friendly option for homeowners to return necessary paperwork.
Additional information, including easy-to-follow upload instructions, are included with the application package that Keep Your Home California provides to all homeowners once they have completed their counseling session and are found conditionally eligible.
Homeowners, even those who aren’t “tech-savvy,” should find the new upload service easy to use.
Perhaps the most technologically demanding aspect of the new service for homeowners is ensuring their documents are saved in the PDF format. Many financial documents are already saved as PDFs. However, if your documents are saved in another format, don’t worry. Converting documents into a PDF is easy.
If your document is in Microsoft Word format, just open the document and go to the “Home” tab and in the upper left corner of the page click on the Office icon. Scroll down to “Save As” and then hit “PDF or XPS” on the right. The original document will be copied and converted into a PDF.
If the homeowner only has hard copies of some or all of their documents, they can scan and save their documents in PDF format.
It’s probably best to save the PDF version on the computer desktop for easy reference. You may also want to create a folder on the desktop where you save all Keep Your Home California-related documents.
An alternative way is to visit one of the many websites that convert documents into PDFs – for free. You upload the document and the website does the rest.
Of course, homeowners still have the option to fax or mail in the necessary paperwork.
- If homeowners fax documents, they must use the document cover sheet and fax the paperwork to the fax number provided in their application package. If they do not use the cover sheet, the documents may get lost and the processing of their file may be delayed.
- Regular mail and express mail documents should be sent to: Keep Your Home California, P.O. Box 5678, Riverside, CA 92517. Please do not send original copies or double-sided copies.
Also, homeowners can apply for Keep Your Home California through the dozens of partner housing counseling agencies in the state, which offer face-to-face counseling services at no cost to the homeowner. The certified counselors at these nonprofit agencies can assist homeowners throughout the application process and their services are completely free for homeowners.
Uploading documents is fast and easy, but the only way to ensure a quicker response from Keep Your Home California is to make sure all required documentation (including all pages of each required document) has been sent in and the homeowner’s package is complete.
As of the latest quarterly report (fourth quarter 2016), the median processing time for Keep Your Home California was 50 days. In general, the Unemployment Mortgage Assistance Program has the shortest application process, while the Principal Reduction Program often takes the most time.
Keep Your Home California has assisted more than 72,000 homeowners with approximately $1.7 billion in funding.
In order to apply, homeowners must have a financial hardship, such as a job loss, cut in pay, divorce, death in the family or extraordinary medical expenses.
In addition to the financial hardship, homeowners must meet county-by-county income requirements and their mortgage servicer – the company that collects the monthly payment – needs to participate in Keep Your Home California.
Homeowners interested in learning more or applying for the program should call the counseling center at 888-954-KEEP (5337) or visit www.KeepYourHomeCalifornia.org or www.ConservaTuCasaCalifornia.org for Spanish speakers. The counseling center is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. Calls can be taken in virtually any language through a free translation service.
Photos courtesy of the artists of Unsplash.
Paperwork is part of the application process with Keep Your Home California.
Nothing really new to you here — many of the documents that were necessary when you applied for a mortgage are also required for Keep Your Home California. But our application process may make homeowners eligible for much-needed financial assistance to ease their mortgage problems.
Instead of spending thousands of dollars when obtaining a mortgage –– for closing costs, down payment and escrowed funds — the Keep Your Home California application process is free.
On top of that, the federally funded, state-managed program is actually helping you save your home – along with your commitment, your effort and the money you have invested in your home. Plus, you don’t have to move and, for some people, that is priceless.
Certain documents are needed to determine a homeowner’s eligibility for Keep Your Home California assistance. Documentation of eligibility is required before assistance may be provided, in order to safeguard this taxpayer-funded program.
The following are the most frequently required documents needed to apply for Keep Your Home California:
- Pay stubs
- EDD pay stub, if applying for the Unemployment Mortgage Assistance Program
- Bank statements
- A hardship affidavit letter (more information regarding hardships below)
- Third-party disclosure
- Tax forms from previous years, such as your 1040s
- Current property insurance statement
- Current property tax statement
- A copy of a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure agreement (if applying for the Transition Assistance Program)
Now, each homeowner – and their situation – is different, so additional documents may be needed to verify eligibility for assistance.
It is almost impossible to overstate the importance of documentation in the Keep Your Home California application process. The reasons why homeowners need the mortgage assistance in the first place are revealed through the documents they provide.
Also, documents are vital to a homeowner’s eligibility determination. In fact, an application for assistance is not complete until all required documents have been provided. The documents are the key to unlocking the door to assistance from Keep Your Home California, which must meet federal requirements to safeguard this taxpayer-funded program.
There are three unique Keep Your Home California programs designed to help homeowners remain in their homes:
- The Principal Reduction Program offers as much as $100,000 to reduce the homeowner’s outstanding first mortgage balance and often lowers their monthly mortgage payment. The program helps homeowners dealing with unaffordable and/or underwater mortgages, where the amount owed exceeds the current value of the home.
- The Unemployment Mortgage Assistance Program provides up to $3,000 per month for up to 18 months – or a total of $54,000 – for out-of-work homeowners eligible for jobless benefits from the California Employment Development Department.
- The Mortgage Reinstatement Assistance Program allows homeowners to catch-up on past-due mortgage payments, up to $54,000, provided homeowners can afford their monthly payments going forward.
As mentioned above, homeowners must have endured or still be suffering from a financial hardship, such as a job loss, cut in pay, divorce, death in the family, extraordinary medical bills or other financial challenges in order to qualify. Keep Your Home California representatives will help determine whether your hardship qualifies for the program.
Homeowners interested in learning more or applying for the program should call the counseling center at 888-954-5337 or find more information at www.KeepYourHomeCalifornia.org or at www.ConservaTuCasaCalifornia.org for Spanish speakers. The counseling center is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. Calls can be taken in virtually any language through a free translation service.
Photo courtesy of the artists of Unsplash.