Seven ways to get free or discounted home repairs

Property values ​​and taxes have risen across the country, with some homeowners turning to home improvement assistance programs for major repairs.

If you are in need of costly repairs, help may be available.

A water heater can cost $480 to repair and almost $1,100 to replace


A water heater can cost $480 to repair and almost $1,100 to replaceCredit: GETTY

Being a homeowner has its advantages, but it can also be extremely expensive; leaking roofs, broken windows, and broken appliances.

A few federal home repair programas well as state and local nonprofit organizations that provide assistance to those who qualify.

If you’re considering expensive repairs, you can especially benefit from a program that pays out-of-pocket.

Home page The average roof repair report is $653, while the average replacement is $6,626.

As for the furnace repair, it was $267, which doesn’t seem too bad compared to the $4,376 replacement cost.

Another expensive item: a boiler. They cost $350 to repair and about $4,000 to replace.

Here are some programs to help with costs, if you encounter unexpected problems.

1. HUD Title 1 property improvement loans

Through United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), you can get a fixed-rate loan to finance any type of home repair or improvement.

The maximum loan for a single-family home is $25,000.

For multi-family homes, the maximum is $60,000.

To qualify, applicants must show proof they can repay the loan through regular monthly payments.

2. 203(k) reinsurance mortgage insurance

This allows homeowners to borrow up to $35,000 through their mortgage for home repairs or improvements.

All applications must be submitted through a FHA Approved Lenders.

To qualify for a loan, the cost of repairs or improvements must be at least $5,000.

3. Section 504 home repair program

This program provides homeowners with loans to repair or generally improve their home.

These loans have a low fixed interest rate of 1% and a repayment term of 20 years.

The maximum loan amount is $20,000.

To qualify, household income must be less than 50% of the median income in that area.

4. VA loan for rehabilitation and renovation

The United States Department of Veterans Affairs offers a loan option for veterans.

These loans operate similarly to the 203(k) loan program, and the loans are capped at the estimated value of the property.

To be eligible, borrowers must meet Requirements for a VA . loan.

5. Home improvement loans

Available to seniors and people with disabilities, this program can help secure free or low-cost home repairs.

These loans are provided through state and local agencies, rather than the federal government.

The National Directory of Home Repair and Repair Resources can be searched by state for more resources.

6. State and community program

Depending on where you live, you may be eligible for a local program.

One such program for DC residents was recently noticed by DCist.

Although the program, called Single Family Residential Rehabilitation Programhas its own challenges and has struggled to keep up with growing demand, it still offers welcome benefits to those in Washington, DC.

To be eligible, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Own and live in their home as their primary residence for at least three years
  • Up to date with all county and federal taxes
  • Have a credit report showing current payments for all mortgages over the past 12 months
  • Have an existing homeowner’s insurance
  • Meet the household income limit

7. Charity organization

If you don’t want to borrow money for repair assistance, charities are a good source for immediate assistance.

Some of the charities offering support include:

The Sun provides updates on universal basic income here.

Plus, see how homeowners have doubled down on home renovations since before the pandemic, and hear millennials discuss home ownership and home repairs.

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Caroline Bleakley

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