The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently announced new changes that will give wounded warriors greater access to grant money for building or remodeling their homes.
Under the new rules instituted by the VA, servicemembers will be able to receive up to three adaptive grants worth up to $81,080 in total from the Department. In a press release issued by the VA, Secretary Dr. James B. Peake said, “Veterans seriously disabled during their military service have earned this benefit. This change ensures that every eligible veteran and servicemember has the chance to use the maximum amount afforded to them by our grateful nation.”
There are three types of grants these veterans can apply for:
- Specially Adapted Housing Grant (SAH)
- Special Housing Adaptation Grant (SHA)
- Temporary Residence Adaptation Grant (TRA)
Under the SAH grant, veterans or servicemembers can receive up to $81,080 for fiscal year 2018. Under the SHA grant, eligible veterans or servicemembers can receive grants of up to 50 percent of the cost of a house adapted for their use, up to $16,217 in fiscal year 2018. For TRA grants, veterans and servicemembers can apply if they temporarily live in a home owned by a family member, and can receive up to $35,593 as SAH recipients and up to $6,355 as SHA recipients.
What else should I know about VA adapted housing grants?
Not all veterans are eligible to receive these types of grants. Eligibility is determined by the Veterans Service Center of jurisdiction in that veteran’s area. These rating decisions are subject to reviews and revisions, but in general, there are several statutory requirements for veterans to be eligible for these grants:
- It must be feasible from a medical perspective for the veteran to live in the house in question.
- The house must be fully adapted to be suitable for the living purposes of the veteran or servicemember.
- It must be feasible financially for that veteran or servicemember to purchase the house, including the grant assistance he or she receives.
- Veterans themselves must meet certain disability requirements to be eligible for these grants, including experiencing blindness in both eyes, loss of use of both hands, suffering from severe burn injuries or suffering from severe respiratory injuries. Sometimes the need to use canes, crutches, wheelchairs or braces is also sufficient.
There is no time limit or deadline for applying for adapted housing grants, and there is no time limit on the use of the grant money. The grant can be used anywhere within the United States, including Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and the Northern Mariana Islands. It can even be used outside the United States if the country or political subdivision allows people who acquire beneficial property interests and the Secretary has deemed it practicable to provide assistance in that situation.
For more information about how you can get a grant for your specialized housing needs, contact an ADA contractor in Pennsylvania at WSL Incorporated. We look forward to working with you!