Dealing with a disability is already challenging enough; however, when it comes to purchasing a home, that challenge turns into an adaptability issue. Thankfully by using VA home loans, not only would you be taking advantage of a home loan program that offers some great benefits. You would also be able to use the two disability housing grants, which can fund home adaptation to meet your disability requirements.

These two grants are named Specially Adaptive Housing (SAH) and Special Home Adaptation (SHA) Grants. Both of these grants allow you to make modifications to an existing property. However, they do have different eligibility requirements.

Specially Adaptive Housing (SAH) Grant

SAH grants are meant to finance the purchasing, building, or adaptation of a permanent residence to meet the needs of veterans who are dealing with a qualifying disability. Additional eligibility for the loan includes property and disability requirements. 

To be eligible, the applicant must have one of the following disabilities, including:

        • Loss of use of both legs because of amputation or injury.
        • Blindness in both eyes, or only having light perception with the loss or loss of use of at least one leg. 
        • Loss of use of both arms at the elbow or above.
        • The loss of one leg with lasting effects resulting from disease or injury affecting the applicant’s ability to move around unassisted.
        • Severe burn injuries throughout the body.
        • Lost one leg or foot after September 11th, 2001, impedes the applicant’s ability to move around unassisted by a cane or crutches. (Only 30 applicants can qualify for this disability per year) 

As far as property eligibility is concerned, it must go through inspection to qualify for the grant to ensure that it meets the applicant’s specific disabilities. Accessibility should cover more than just the applicant, and it should also allow access to caregivers and family members. 

One additional requirement is that the applicant owns or will own the home getting adapted with the grant. Which, as of 2021, has allowances up to $100,896 for eligible applicants.

Special Housing Adaptation (SHA) Grant

Like the SAH grant, SHA grants are offered for the construction, purchasing, or adapting of a home to meet the need of its disabled owner. However, unlike the SAH grant, which requires that the applicant own or is about to own the property, the SHA grant allows for a family member to own the property. 

As far as the disability is concerned, SHA grants require that the applicant has at least one of the following disabilities. These include:

        • Blindness in both eyes with a visual acuity of 20/200 or less.  
        • Lost the use or completely lost both arms.
        • Severe bodily burns.
        • Injuries to the respiratory system must make it hard to breathe unassisted.

Currently, SHA grants up to $20,215 to purchase and adapt a property to meet disabled veterans and their families’ needs. 

Both the SAH and SHA grants are usable up to three times throughout the applicant’s lifetime. Therefore, the applicants are not required to use the full amount of the grant right away and can use it as needed. 

Temporary Residence Adaption (TRA) Grants

While both SAH and SHA grants require the property to be the applicant’s primary and permanent address, TRA allows applicants to modify a temporary residence. This grant is perfect for applicants who are living in a place temporarily but need to modify it to meet their disability needs.

Qualifying for the TRA grant requires the applicant to meet the disability requirements for either the SAH or SHA grants. Dictating how much the TRA grant will award eligible applicants. If the applicant has disabilities that qualify them for a SAH grant, the TRA grant will award them up to $40,637 to adapt their temporary residence. However, if the applicant qualifies for the SHA grant, the TRA grant will award them up to $7,256 for the fiscal year of 2021.  

VA Loans

Grants meant for home adaptation are supplementary to the VA loan, which is for Veterans, Active-duty Service Members, and eligible spouses. These Government guaranteed home loans are among the most significant benefits of serving in the military. 

There are property, service, credit, and income eligibility requirements to meet VA home loan qualifications. However, once an applicant is considered eligible, they will enjoy some of the best benefits out of any home loans available. These benefits are:

        • $0 down payment requirement.
        • Lower monthly payments.
        • Lower interest rates.
        • No mortgage insurance premiums.
        • No prepayment penalties.

Additionally, these loans can also cover the funding fee and come in 15 to 30-year fixed-rate mortgages. 

Conclusion

Rewarding disabled veterans with the ability to become homeowners and adapt those homes to meet their needs is part of the government’s commitment to its men and women in uniform. Additionally, benefits offered by VA home loans reduce and at times completely remove some of the initial costs associated with homeownership, making homeownership more accessible.    

To learn more about government loans or submit a VA loan application, call us at (617) 396-7328.