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Deadline for loan help is extended to Wednesday

By Jenifer B. McKim
Globe Staff / July 23, 2011

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Troubled homeowners hoping to apply for mortgage help through a federal no-interest loan program will have a few more days to fill out paperwork because the Department of Housing and Urban Development extended the deadline until midnight Wednesday.

HUD said that it extended the deadline, which was originally yesterday, in order to give as many people as possible the chance to qualify for up to $50,000 in mortgage help that can be forgiven over time. Some housing advocates had worried that not enough people have applied out of ignorance or skepticism - a situation that could leave some of the coveted funds unused.

As much as $61 million is slated for Massachusetts, funding that is expected to help more than 1,200 distressed homeowners. The program, approved by Congress last summer, is supposed to provide $1 billion in loans in 32 states and Puerto Rico. Applications in most states were made available in late June, and the money needs to be allocated by Sept. 30.

To qualify, homeowners’ income must have dropped by at least 15 percent due to unemployment, a pay cut, or a health emergency. Homeowners must be at least three months behind on their mortgage and facing foreclosure. To apply, call 855-346-3345, or go to www.findehlp.org.