There are a number of state and local funding options available to those who qualify, as well as sources for funding assistance. If you have any questions regarding funding, please contact Access North by email or by calling.
(800) 390-3681 Toll Free
(218) 262-6675 V/TTY
State and Local Funding
Many states and localities provide special grants and loans to their residents for home remodeling.
Contact your local or state housing authorities to determine the availability of such programs in your area. State finance agencies, departments of public welfare, community development departments, and building inspection departments are other possible sources of information. Private funding may be easier to locate than public funding, but you should thoroughly research the availability of money from public sources. A variety of agencies or departments may have funding available, so don't hesitate to ask questions that may lead you to other resources. In most cases, the key to obtaining money is an effective proposal. A two or three page letter with supporting documents is the strongest approach to many of these agencies and associations, although some may have their own application forms. Your letter should include at least the following:
- The reason for modification.
- The solution you're proposing.
- The total cost of the project with an analysis of appropriate separate elements. An itemized estimate by a qualified individual is often helpful.
- The amount you are able to pay.
- A conclusion requesting funds and thanking the organization for its consideration. Remember that short, succinct proposals are the best form of communication.
Public Sources for Funding Assistance
The Farmers Home Administration (FMHA) provides 502 or 504 loans in rural areas. Low-income homeowners over age 62 also qualify for grants under 504 to build and repair their homes. Contact your local FMHA county office.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) provides direct loans to certain neighborhood development and employment agencies. Contact your city government or HUD field office to determine if such a program is available in your area.
HUD also distributes funds under the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program to towns and cities for neighborhood improvement. The local government decides how to use this money, but some jurisdictions have elected to use part of their grants to help residents fix their homes. Contact your local government to determine if such a program exists in your area.
The Veterans Administration (VA) provides low-interest loans to veterans to modify their homes. Contact the Veterans Administration to help you secure funding.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows you to deduct equipment, furnishings and permanent changes for access to your home as medical expenses on your IRS form. These deductions must be itemized on schedule A with other medical expenses. If you're audited, you'll need a statement from your realtor or contractor. The IRS Treasury Publication 907 (revised November 1981) can explain this program. To view the 2016 IRS Treasury Publication 907, please use the link below:
Reprinted with permission from the American Association of Retired Persons.