Home Loans & Grants Frequently Asked Questions
Information about the ins and outs of your HHQ home improvement loan.
Q: How do I apply for a home improvement loan?
A: You may download and complete an application from our website, stop in and pick up an application or call our office to request a loan application be sent to you in the mail. Applications must be completed, signed and returned along with the required documentation.
Q: What documents will I need to include along with my loan application?
A: You will need to include the following documents to complete your loan application:
- Copy of the recorded deed to your home.
- Proof property taxes and water bill are current.
- Proof of income for all household members (i.e. 3 recent pay stubs; benefit letter for SSI, Social Security, pension, unemployment, disability, etc.).
- Copy of federal tax returns from the last 2 years.
- Bank statements from the last 3 months.
- Copy of declarations page of homeowner’s insurance stating current policy period, amount of coverage & listing of all mortgages against the property.
- Copy of photo I.D. (i.e. driver’s license).
Q: I noticed that for many federally-funded programs, your household income must be 80% or below the median income of this area as defined by HUD. What are the HUD Income Limits?
A: The HUD Income Limits change each year. Click here for a downloadable PDF of the most recent HUD income limits.
Q: Are Home HeadQuarters’ loans secured?
A: Yes, at closing you will sign a mortgage. A mortgage is considered a lien on your property.
Q: Will I need to have Home Owner’s Insurance?
A: Yes, a requirement of your HHQ loan is that you will continue to have ongoing Home Owner’s Insurance with no lapses.
Q: Can I make extra principal payments on my loan?
A: Yes, please feel free to send in additional money to shorten the term of your loan. There is no pre-payment penalty. If you are doing this, please mark your check or money order appropriately as “principal only”.
Q: Can I pay with cash or a credit card?
A: HHQ does not accept cash in our office. However, we do have the ability to take a credit card payment if necessary on a case-by-case basis. As a general rule, payments to HHQ should be in the form of a check or money order.
Q: What if I want to refinance my 1st Mortgage?
A: If you would like to refinance your 1st Mortgage, the new mortgage holder will want to be in 1st lien position. Often, HHQ will allow this if your account is current. If your account is current and your Subordination Request is approved, there is a processing fee payable by check, money order or cashier’s check. If you have any outstanding late fees, they will need to be paid.
Q: Can HHQ refinance my existing loan or any other loans I have from other lenders?
A: No, HHQ does not have the ability to refinance your loan.
Q: Will I get a monthly statement?
A: No, at closing you received payment coupons if you did not sign up for auto-pay.
Q: What is a deferred loan and do I have one?
A: Depending on your income and family size, there are times when HHQ can provide a customer with financing that is secured against the property, but no monthly payments are required. The loan only comes due if the house is sold before the end of the term or if the customer no longer lives in the property as an owner-occupant. This type of arrangement is called a “deferred loan”. It is a loan because we have secured our interest. It is deferred because no monthly payments are due. Typically this program is only offered in the City of Syracuse.
Q: Did I receive more than one deferred loan?
A: It is possible that you received more than one deferred loan. Please check the HHQ file you were given at closing for appropriate documentation.
Q: What happens when my loan is paid off?
A: HHQ will forward you a letter stating that your loan is paid off, and help you to file a mortgage discharge with the County Clerk's office.
Q: What happens if I die before my loan is paid off?
A: HHQ submits a claim to the Surrogate office for the balance of our loan; including any deferred monies.
Q: If I sell my property, what happens to my loan?
A: HHQ loans cannot be transferred and must be satisfied at closing with proceeds. Please contact us 10 days prior to your closing for an accurate payoff amount.
Q: What happens if my loan becomes delinquent?
A: HHQ takes our collection efforts very seriously, but we try to work with our customers as much as possible. When delinquency is severe, we utilize the services of outside collection agency.
Q: Can I pay my loan off early?
A: Yes, HHQ does not have a pre-payment penalty. However, if you received a grant or deferred monies for your home improvement needs, you may be obligated to pay back the amount you received if you are selling your home prior to the end of the occupancy period. Please review your closing paperwork or call us if necessary.
Q: Does HHQ offer debt consolidation loans?
A: No; however, HHQ does offer credit counseling to assist you with your credit needs.
Q: Do I have a grant or a loan?
A: Please refer to the paperwork you received at closing; or call us and we will be more than happy to assist you answering this question.
Q: Can I apply for additional HHQ loans?
A: You can certainly apply for any loan HHQ offers. We will take the status of your loan as well as your credit history into consideration.
Q: How do I obtain the balance on my account?
A: Please call us for the balance on your account.
Q: Is my first loan payment deferred until the work on my home is complete?
A: If your work has not yet been completed and/or started, your first payment is still due, as stated in your Promissory Note.
Q: How do I submit bank account changes if necessary?
A: If you are on auto pay and you change banks; we will need to be notified as soon as possible and you will be required to complete an Account Change Form.
Q: Does HHQ sell their loans?
A: While it is not our normal practice, we reserve the right to do so.