Maryland Accessible Homes for Seniors is a state-wide grant program offered to lower income elderly individuals who make improvements to their home to increase accessibility. This program aids in allowing seniors to continue to live independently in their homes, and may include a variety of improvements, such as installing ramps, railings, grab bars, and widening doorways.
The program provides eligible senior applicants with a deferred payment loan of 30 years. This is essentially a second mortgage at zero percent interest with no monthly payments. Repayment of the loan is due at the sale or transfer of ownership of the home or when the loan recipient moves from the home. There are also funds given outright as grants to improve the accessibility and safety of one’s home.
In order to be eligible for the Maryland Accessible Homes for Seniors program, there are both individual and home criteria that must be met as follows:
- One member of the household must be at least 55 years of age.
- Financial requirements state that income can be no greater than 80% of the Maryland median. As of 2016, households with income less than roughly $60,000 should meet financial eligibility requirements. In the event the senior lives in a relative’s home, financial eligibility is based on all people residing in the household.
- Must be located in Maryland
- Must be structurally sound and not pose any major safety or health issues.
- Applicant must own and be present in the home that needs repairs/improvements. However, senior applicants who are residing with family members will still be considered.
- Must not have any pending financial cases or owe back taxes on the house.
The Maryland Accessible Homes for Seniors program, via the WholeHome program, offers financial assistance for a variety of home improvements to increase accessibility for elderly Maryland residents. Improvements and modifications may include: the addition of exterior ramps or stair lifts; widening of doorways; addition of hand railings; bathroom modifications; lever handles for faucets and doors; rocker light switches and/or relocation of electrical outlets; addition of lighting; addition or renovation of a first floor bathroom; addition of a first floor bedroom; and closet adjustments.
Financial assistance comes in the form of deferred loans, offered up to 30 years at zero percent interest. Loans are limited, generally, to the value of the home owned, debt free. These loans require no monthly payment and only become due when a home is sold, transferred or the loan recipient moves from the home. If an applicant is not eligible for a loan, a grant of up to $25,000 may be available.
To learn more about the Maryland Accessible Homes for Seniors program, visit or call Department of Housing and Community Development at 1-800-638-7781. You may also contact the Maryland Department of Aging at 410-767-1100 or the Maryland Access Point Agency.