Grant programs do not offer funding specifically for rewiring a home. However, certain home rehabilitation grant programs allow awardees to use funds for electrical work or to rectify safety issues in a home, which may include rewiring. Only a limited number of programs offer grants for rehabilitation projects, but homeowners can also obtain funding through loan programs sponsored by federal agencies. Rehabilitation funding programs may limit eligibility based on household income or recipients' ages.
Rural Repair and Rehabilitation Loans and Grants
The Rural Repair and Rehabilitation Loans and Grants program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, provides funding for rural homeowners. The program offers grant and loan funding only to very low-income households and property owners can use funds only to repair, modernise or improve conditions related to safety and health. The USDA awards grants only to senior citizen homeowners, 62 years of age and older. Homeowners eligible for grants can receive a maximum of £4,875 and loan recipients can borrow £13,000, as of June 2011. Senior citizens who receive grants may also qualify for loan funding, not to exceed £17,875 in grant and loan combined assistance.
Section 203(k) Rehabilitation Program
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Section 203(k) program insures mortgages that include funding for home rehabilitation. Home buyers purchasing a home, or homeowners refinancing a property, who need rehabilitation work can utilise Section 203(k) financing. The program often saves time in the loan process, because it eliminates the need for a borrower to apply for a mortgage and a separate rehabilitation loan. Borrowers can typically save money through the Section 203(k) program because lenders apply regular mortgage interest rates to the entire loan package. To qualify for the Section 203(k) program, a home must be one year old or older and the rehabilitation costs must total £3,250 or more.
Community Development Block Grant Program
HUD offers funding to counties and cities through the Community Development Block Grant Program. Grantees use CDBG awards to fund housing programs for low- to moderate-income residents within their communities. Each community that receives CDBG funding can develop its own programs and priorities. Logan, Utah, for example, uses CDBG money to fund its Housing Rehabilitation Assistance program. The Logan program also offers rehabilitation funding to property owners who rent housing to low- to moderate-income households. Grantees can use funding for electrical rewiring, plumbing repair or installing smoke detectors.
Due to budget constraints, local governments nationwide have eliminated grant programs to fund home rehabilitation, but a limited number remain in certain communities. Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in association with the Parish of East Baton Rouge, offers the Housing Rehabilitation Grant Program. The program helps low-income homeowners fund home repair projects and offers grants up to £14,300. The City Parish Office of Community Development administers the program and bases awards on household income and family size. To qualify for funding, homeowners must live in the home for which they are applying for funding and carry hazard insurance on the property.