Today, Congressman Mike Turner (OH-10) advocated for the Homes for Every Local Protector, Educator, and Responder (HELPER) Act and how it will benefit the educators and first responders in Trotwood, and communities across the country. The bill will make it easier for educators and first responders to afford their first home in the communities they work in by allowing eligible individuals to qualify for a one-time mortgage on their primary home and be exempt from a down-payment and monthly mortgage insurance premium.
The HELPER Act currently has 77 co-sponsors in the House, including four members from Ohio. In addition, the bill is supported by the Ohio Association of Professional Fire Firefighters, the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police, the Ohio Sheriffs Association, Mayor Mary McDonald of Trotwood, Mayor Jeffrey Mims Jr. of Dayton, and Mayor Sharretta Smith of Lima.
"Providing Dayton residents with access to safe and affordable housing continues to be a top priority for me," said Turner. "With the HELPER Act, educators and first responders will be able to establish long-term roots in the region and will be more closely connected to the communities they serve. Making Dayton more affordable for our educators and first responders benefits not only those families, but the entire community."
"The HELPER Act is one way to show our appreciation and support for those who put their lives on the line each and every day. By removing some of the financial obstacles faced when buying a home, our first responders would have a realistic path to affordable homeownership," said Mayor McDonald.
The HELPER Act creates a program within the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to provide mortgage assistance to law enforcement officers, firefighters, and other first responders, as well as elementary and secondary school teachers. Eligible individuals would qualify for a one-time mortgage on their primary home and be exempt from a down-payment and monthly mortgage insurance premium, making it easier and more affordable for educators and first responders to live in the communities they serve.
This program is available to federal state and local law enforcement officers, firefighters, paramedics, emergency medical technicians, and teachers employed by public and private, state accredited k-12 schools.
To qualify, a person with one of the proceeding occupations must:
Be employed full time
Have been employed as such for four or more consecutive years
Certify they have a good faith intent to continue such employment for at least one year following their closing date on the mortgage
be in good standing with their employer, AND
Meet requirements set by the HUD secretary to ensure the insurance of the mortgage presents an acceptable risk to the Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund