Various Funding Sources for Home Modifications
Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) Home Modification Resources
Vocational Rehabilitation Program
The Rehabilitation Technology Department’s Adaptive Housing Program at MRC serves consumers with disabilities who are pursuing vocational/employment goals with needs for home modification. Contact: Eugene Blumkin (617)-204-3721 or Eugene.Blumkin@state.ma.us
Independent Living Center: Title VII Part B
In Massachusetts, federal money from Title VII Part B funding is made available to many of the Independent Living Centers (ILC) in Massachusetts for the purchase of equipment and services to assist people to maintain or achieve independence. For more information, please contact a regional ILC or contact MRC at (617)-204-3628
Home Modification Loan Program
The Home Modification Loan Program provides low- and no-interest loans to modify the homes of elders, adults and children with disabilities. Such home modifications allow individuals with disabilities to remain in their homes and live independently in their communities. Any homeowner who has a disability or has a household member who has a disability, or rents to an individual with a disability may apply for this loan. Contact: Susan Gillam at 1-866-500-5599 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website for more information www.mass.gov/mrc/hmlp.
The Massachusetts Assistive Technology Loan Program (ATLP)
The Massachusetts Assistive Technology Loan Program (ATLP) provides low-interest loans to qualified people with disabilities and their families to purchase assistive technology devices and services that will help them lead more independent lives. If you are not financially eligible for home modifications under the HMLP, you may be able to apply to the ATLP. Contact: Leonidas Tonevski at 1-800-244-2756 ext.428 or 431 TTY 1-800-564-9700 or www.massatloan.org
Other State Agencies with Home Modification Resources
Department of Developmental Services (DDS)
Individuals eligible for services for the Department of Developmental Services may be eligible to receive adaptive housing services through the Family Support Program. For more information contact your regional DDS office or visit www.mass.gov/dds.
Catastrophic Illness in Children Relief Fund (CICRF)
The Catastrophic Illness in Children Relief Fund was established by legislation in 2000 to help families bear the excessive financial burdens associated with the care of children with special health care needs and disabilities. For more information, call Division for Special Health Needs Community Support Line at 1-800-882-1435 or go to www.mass.gov/eohhs/gov/departments/dph/programs/family-health/cicrf
Mass Housing, Home Improvement Loan Program
Mass Housing is the state's affordable housing bank. They lend money at rates below the conventional market to support affordable rental and home ownership opportunities for low- and moderate-income residents of Massachusetts. The Home Improvement Loan Program provides funds to make general, non-luxury improvements to your property, which include necessary home modifications. www.masshousing.com 617-854-1000
Regional Organizations with Home Modification Resources
Rebuilding Together is a nonprofit organization, using community resources and volunteers to provide free home modifications and repairs for elders and individuals with disabilities. www.rebuildingtogether.org The following communities in Massachusetts have local Rebuilding Together chapters:
- Boston: 617-971-0058
- Worcester: 413-283-6709
- Haverhill: 978-469-0800
Federal Agencies with Home Modification Resources
U.S. Housing and Urban Development; Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG)
The Massachusetts Community Development Block Grant Program is a federally funded program designed to help small cities and towns meet a broad range of community development initiatives. Some communities may chose to use these funds for home modifications or home repairs. Visit http://www.hud.gov/local/ma/community/cdbg/ to see if your community receives CDBG funding or contact your city/town’s Housing or Community Development Office.
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Rural Development; Home Improvement Loans and Grants
Low income rural homeowners may receive funds to make substantial home repairs, or to remove health and safety hazards. The Home Repair Program also provides funds to make a home accessible to someone with disabilities. Homeowners 62 years and older are eligible for grants, other low income families and individuals may receive loans at a 1% interest rate. Visit http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/had-rr_loans_grants.html for more information. Or contact the state office at 413-253-4300 a regional office: Western MA 413-585-1000 ext. 4., Central MA and the North Shore 508-829-4477 ext. 4., Southeastern MA, Cape and Islands 508-295-5151.
Department of Veteran's Affairs
Veterans with service disabilities can receive funds to modify their homes. The Specially Adapted Housing Program allows veterans with a service related disability to receive a grant of not more than 50% of cost of specially adapted housing unit or to a max of $60,000. The funds may be used to build, buy or modify a home. For more information call 800-827-1000.
Homes for Our Troops
Homes for Our Troops is a non-profit, non-partisan, 501 (c)(3) organization founded in 2004. The organization assists severely injured Servicemen and Women and their immediate families by raising donations of money, building materials and professional labor and then coordinating the process of building a new home or adapting an existing home for accessibility. (Toll free) 1-866-7-TROOPS www.homesforourtroops.org
Disability Specific Organizations
These organizations offer a range of resources and may or may not have resources specifically related to home modifications.
Muscular Dystrophy Association at www.mda.org
- Greater Boston - Boston (617) 368-9155
- Central Mass. - Westboro (508) 898-3375
- Northeast - Beverly (978) 720-2800
United Cerebral Palsy (UCP)
- UCP of the Berkshires www.ucpberkshire.org
- Pittsfield (413) 442-1562
- North Adams (413) 664-9345
- UCP of Metro Boston www.ucpboston.org
- Watertown (617)-926-5480
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Association of MA
www.als-ma.org 781-255-8884 or 888-287-3257
American Parkinson’s Disease Association
Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts
www.biama.org 508-475-0032 0r 800-242-0030
Federation for Children with Special Needs
www.fcsn.org (617) 236-7210 or 800-331-0688
Civic and Religious Organizations
There are many civic and religious organizations that provide help to individuals on a wide variety of issues. You should reach out to those in your community who may know more about what is available in your community. Some examples of these kinds of organizations include:Elks, Knights of Columbus, Shriner's, Lion's, Rotary, Masons Grand Lodge
Other Helpful Links
- NE Index, Information on Disabilities Exchange
Search for contractors and many other providers of services to people with disabilities. For a list of home modification contractors click on " Search for a Program or a Service" go to "Browse by selecting a program type" and select "home modification." Please note that NE Index, MRC or Providers of the Home Modification Loan Program cannot recommend contractors. The NE Index can be used as a resource similar to the Yellow Pages.
- Massachusetts Consumer Affairs
Check the record of a contractor, file a complaint and get advice on resolving a consumer problem. This site also has information on Home Improvement. View the CA information.
- National Consumer Law Center
Basic information for consumers on the most critical consumer issues.
- AT Loan Program
The Massachusetts Assistive Technology Loan Program, operated by Easter Seals Massachusetts, is an alternative financing project that gives people with disabilities and elders access to low interest cash loans to purchase assistive devices and services. The program has many options that can help - even for people who don't think they would qualify for a loan.
- Adaptive Environments: Human Centered Design www.AdaptiveEnvironments.org Phone: 617-695-1225 Adaptive Environments provides consultation services about accessibility and universal design in a wide range of built environments including but not limited to public buildings, schools, offices, urban design, transportation, healthcare settings, public space, cultural facilities and a wide range of residential design. Services range from analysis of existing conditions and strategic planning to working collaboratively on design teams for both new construction and renovation. They specialize in clarifying legal and code requirements for accessibility but also on recommending best practices from a universal design perspective, drawing on an extensive knowledge of international design solutions.
- The Accessible Housing Registry
Finding accessible rental housing: Mass Access is a free program that matches people with disabilities with vacant, accessible apartments. Contact CHAPA at (617) 742-0820 or (800) 466-3111. V/TTY (617) 742-5498.