“Aging in place” is the ability to live in one’s own home safely, independently, and comfortably, regardless of age, income, or ability level — 90% of seniors report that they would prefer to stay in their current residence as they age, and 1 out of every 3 households is home to someone over the age of 60. But it’s not just seniors who need home modifications and services.
13.7% of adults have mobility issues caused by a disability or injury that make it difficult for them to ambulate and climb stairs.
Modifying your home into a place that’s safe is a daunting task to undertake — that’s why we help our customers throughout the entire process. We’re here to help you figure out the solutions you need, install them, and follow up to make sure everything is working as it’s supposed to.
We’re also here to help people understand the choices they have for financing these home modifications. In this article, we review the main options available.
Grants & Government Assistance
For veterans: The US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers two different grants; the Specially Adapted Housing Grant and the Special Housing Adaptation Grant. For those who qualify, these can be used for the purchase or construction of a new home, or the modification of a currently-owned dwelling.
Rural Housing: Housing Repair Loans and Grants program: Provides loans and grants to very low-income homeowners to repair, improve, modernize, or to remove health and safety hazards in their rural dwellings. Grants may be arranged for recipients who are 62 years of age or older and can be used only to pay for repairs and improvements to remove health and safety hazards. Loan/grant combinations may be arranged for applicants who can repay part of the cost.
Your local area agency on aging. Every region has a non-profit Area Agency on Aging that may provide home modification services
Medicaid & Medicare
Many people ask us if Medicaid or Medicare will pay for their home modifications. If you are covered by Medicaid, the answer is maybe — you need to contact the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services to find out. (If you live in another state, just get in touch — we’ll help you find the equivalent agency.)
Unfortunately, Medicare does not cover home modification services.
Low- or no-interest loans
For homeowners & buyers
- Homeowners may talk to their bank or local credit union about obtaining a home equity loan, in which you borrow the amount needed for renovations by using the equity of your home as collateral.
- The Pennsylvania Assistive Technology Foundation offers low- and no-interest loans to people who need mobility-related home modifications. (Again, if you live in a different state, we’ll help you find the equivalent agency.)
- The PA Housing Finance Agency provides several options:
- ACCESS Home Modification Program: Provides mortgage loans to disabled people and those living in a home with a disabled person, who are purchasing a home that needs accessibility modifications. The deferred payment loan has no interest, and no monthly payment. The loan becomes due and payable upon sale, transfer, or non-owner occupancy of the property.
- HomeStyle Renovation Program: Allows eligible homebuyers or existing homeowners to refinance their mortgage to remodel or renovate. Qualified borrowers can fund up to 75% of the “as completed” appraised value of the property. This allows buyers to make needed repairs right away, without having to take out another loan at a higher rate and with a shorter repayment period.
- Purchase Improvement Loan: Provides a loan to qualifying homebuyers seeking to complete improvements. Eligible buyers may include between $1,000 and $15,000 for repairs and/or improvements.
Other loans and credit cards
If for some reason you do not quality for the types of loans listed above, there are still options for obtaining a fiscally responsible, low-interest loan or credit card in order to finance the renovations you need.
- LightStream is a program from Truist Bank. It allows customers with strong credit to borrow funds, without collateral, in order to pay for expenses such as home modifications. Loans offer fixed competitive rates and flexible terms.
- RenoFi is a company that offers two types of products: home equity loans and mortgage refinancing. These loans are similar to traditional mortgages & home equity loans, but the after-renovation value instead of your home’s current value — allowing customers to borrow more money at low rates.
We know what it’s like to be in your shoes; that’s why we want to help you find the best way for you & your circumstances to finance the renovations your home needs. By creating NAC, we aimed to provide a one-stop-shop for people who need help setting up or remodeling their home, in order to foster better mobility for aging adults and people with a physical disability.
Please get in touch with us by telling us just a little bit about you and your needs, and we’ll get the conversation started!
Need some financial guidance?
Our team knows the best ways the help you find a sensible financial solution for your project. Speak with one of our reps today to learn more.