Disabled Veterans Housing Program Boosts Grant Limits
The landmark housing stimulus legislation that provides tax incentives for first-time home buyers and was signed by President Bush in July also has increased the grant limits for a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) program to help builders and remodelers better accommodate the housing needs and improve the lives of the nation's severely-disabled veterans.
The ceilings on the two grants available through the VA’s Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) program, which went into effect in 2006, were increased a combined $12,000 so that the extensive changes needed to enable severely wounded veterans to live independently could better meet the costs those renovations entailed.
One SAH grant is available to disabled service members to adapt their homes because of a loss of mobility. The ceiling for that grant was raised from $50,000 to $60,000.
A second grant, available to service members because of blindness, was increased $2,000 to a ceiling of $12,000 in the stimulus bill.
“Since these grants first became available, some of our members have put them to great use in helping severely-injured veterans remodel their homes,” said Lonny Rutherford, CGR, CAPS, chairman of NAHB Remodelers and president of Legacy Construction in Farmington, N.M. “The increase passed this year will help them make the extensive renovations needed so they can live as independently as possible.”
NAHB has been urging an increase in grant limits since the SAH program began. In testimony before the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs last year, NAHB Past President Brian Catalde called for a higher ceiling on the limits and other program improvements
In addition to increasing the ceilings for the two grants, changes to the SAH program also include new criteria for eligibility and streamlined the paperwork.
To learn more about the VA’s Specially Adapted Housing program, click here.
For more information, e-mail Kelly Mack at NAHB, or call her at 800-368-5242 x8451.