Homelessness should not be a possibility for the men and women who have served the U.S., and on Sept. 22, legislation was introduced to help prevent it from happening. Rep Tim Walz (MN-01) and Rep. John Boozman (AR-3) introduced the bipartisan Veterans’ Homelessness Prevention and Early Warning Act of 2010, which would work to keep veterans who have borrowed VA loans from going into foreclosure.
This bill would fight an increasingly important issue, as the number of veterans who went into foreclosure from VA loans increased from 8,113 in 2007 to 15,145 in 2009. Walz said that this bill would make the VA take action to assist veterans who could potentially face foreclosure. Action would be taken in two ways:
1.If a VA home loan is going into default, the VA will notify VHA homelessness case managers within 7 business days. The VA will also be responsible for ensuring that the case managers develop plans to put veterans into alternate housing in the case that the veterans does in fact lose their home.
2. Once this legislature is enacted, the VA will have six months to submit a plan for how to properly carry this out, and the VA has one year to then have specific regulations in place.
3. One example of alternate housing that already exists is in Mankato, Minnesota. The Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans created housing for disabled veterans who have face homelessness. Congressmen hope to see more housing of this sort so as to serve more veterans around the country.
This bill focuses on offering proper communication, resources and services to veterans to put an end to this problem. The VA’s home loan program helps veterans afford homes with zero down payments and lower monthly costs, and this bill will help prevent veterans from losing their homes they worked hard to earn and refinance.
Photo thanks to Beverly & Pack under creative common license on Flickr.