Lake Ontario Flood Recovery

The application period closed Friday, September 29, 2017 at 5:00 PM.
Your supporting documentation, estimates and additional information will continue to be accepted if your application was in by the deadline.

Procedural update.
The legislation providing the Flood Relief funding required that we prioritize situation that pose imminent health and safety risks to the occupants. This includes damage to structure, walls and septic systems. This application will be served before stand-alone shoreline applicants.
Stand-alone shoreline damage application will be reviewed and applicants will be contacted if additional information is needed at such time as we are able to serve them. Once you have applied no further action is needed until you are contacted by our staff.

The best way to communicate is via e-mail to We can respond to at least 10 emails in the time that is spent on one phone call.

Please help us help you more efficiently.

Helping Homeowners and Municipalities Recover from Flood Damage along the Lake Ontario Coastline – Updated

To expedite repairs and the construction of shoreline stabilization projects, Governor Cuomo declared a disaster emergency on May 2, 2017 in counties impacted by spring flooding along the Lake Ontario Coastline: Cayuga, Jefferson, Monroe, Niagara, Orleans, Oswego, St. Lawrence, and Wayne.

To aid in relief and recovery efforts, New York State is providing $22 million in assistance for homeowners, businesses and municipalities. From restoring roads, floodwalls and public water infrastructure to assisting small businesses with physical damage to providing New Yorkers with the help they need to repair their homes, these targeted programs are delivering relief to New York families across the entire Lake Ontario region.

$7 Million Available for Homeowners Impacted by Flooding

New York State Homes and Community Renewal will make available up to $7 million in state funding for homeowners along Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River in the aftermath of the extreme weather and severe flooding in the region. The new investment program will provide up to $40,000 for homeowners to support interior and exterior repairs to structural damage caused by flooding, as well as the repair or replacement of permanent fixtures.

For more information about eligibility and program parameters, read the Lake Ontario Home Owner Recovery Assistance Program Fact Sheet.


For Homeowners:

Download the application HERE.

The program will be administered through not-for profit housing organizations seeking to help homeowners affected by the flooding. Homeowners seeking assistance are encouraged to contact the not-for-profit organizations that have already expressed interest in serving as program participants to determine eligibility and ask questions about the program. Those organizations are listed below, along with their contact information and the areas they intend to serve:

Cayuga, Monroe and Wayne Counties

Sheen Housing

Orleans County


Jefferson, Oswego and St. Lawrence Counties

Neighbors Of Watertown, Inc.

Niagara County

Niagara Falls Neighborhood Housing Services, Inc.

Homeowners may also contact the HCR Office of Community Renewal to express interest by contacting or calling 518-474-2057.

** We do not have any information at this time on the pending additional $90 MM for flood victims. We will share information as it becomes available, thank you for your patience. **

It’s Not Too Late to Apply for the Lake Ontario Residential Recovery Program
Deadline Friday September 29th 5pm

First Home Club

Enrollment in First Home Club gives participants:

Households will be provided opportunities for confidential counseling to discuss personal finances, household budgeting and credit history.

Understanding and completing the requirements of the FIRST HOME CLUB 
We will review FIRST HOME CLUB program requirements with you, including the systematic savings process, homeownership counseling and use of the FHC dedicated savings account.

Mortgage Payment versus Rent
We will realistically assess the issues that should be considered in choosing between renting and owning a home.

Financial Planning for a Home
We will estimate the mortgage a household can or should consider affordable. Provide a guide to credit enhancement and maintenance. Assist each household in establishing a schedule of systematic savings.

Choosing an Affordable Home
We will discuss the procedures in searching, negotiating, and making the offer to purchase.

Create a Monthly Budget
We will help you develop budgeting skills in order to manage money in all aspects of the household’s life. Describe the payments (PITI — principal and interest, taxes, and insurance) and costs of maintaining a home.

Contract of Sale
We will explain the signing of the contract and the professional home inspection.

Mortgage Loan Application
We will assist and explain the application and approval process. Explain verification of income, grants, gift letters, and underwriting procedures.

Downpayment and Closing Costs
We will explain downpayment requirement and the fees paid at closing.

The Closing Documents
We will explain the information provided in the various documents executed at closing and the obligations incurred as a borrower.

The Closing
We will help you understand closing day from scheduling and final to who does what at the closing table.

Life as a Homeowner
We will help you in understanding homeownership issues such as the following: payment due dates; late payment penalties; tax benefits of home improvements; how to maintain and improve the home; refinancing choices; importance of keeping good documentation on capital improvements.

Predatory Lending
We will help you in recognizing and avoiding predatory lending practices before and after purchasing a home. Recognizing traps, scams and costly fees such as private transfer fees (sometimes known as “flip fees”).


When accessing our services if you need assistance due to a language barrier, mobility impairments, visual or hearing impairments or other disabilities please let us know in advance so we can provide the necessary accommodations.

First-Time Homebuyer Education and Counseling

“Every man who thinks at all, must know that home is the foundation head, the inspiration, the foundation and the main support, not only of all social virtue but of all motives to human progress, and that no people can prosper, or amount to much, unless they have a home, or the hope of a home” ~Frederick Douglass

The Housing Council’s First Time Homebuyer Education and Counseling program will-provide you with the foundation needed to enable you to attain, maintain and sustain homeownership.  Our staff, with more than 30 years experience, takes the holistic approach when working with future homeowners.

We offer:

  • One-On-One Counseling  – Families receive in-depth one-on-one counseling to determine what individual steps need to be taken to make owning a home a reality.  Credit, savings and income stability is looked at.  A Homeownership Plan is devised which is followed by both the family and counselor.
  • Credit Restoration – A certified Financial Health Counselor will work with you, if needed, to enhance your awareness of the importance of credit scores as they relate to your home purchase.  Assistance with budgeting, savings throughout the credit restoration process enables you to see an increase in your credit scores.  One of the main obstacles for many is past credit issues when applying for a mortgage.  Our program tackles this upfront assisting you with increasing your credit awareness and scores.
  • Monroe County Grant Money – Assistance with Down Payment and Closing costs is available to first time home buyers looking to purchase in Monroe County.  Access to other financial assistance programs is available to program participants. FTHB Monroe County Grant Outreach Flyer
  • Home Buyer Education – Easy to understand steps that you, the first time homebuyer will go through to approach purchasing your home. Choosing a Realtor, Attorney, Lender, Home Inspector, shopping for your home, affordability, continued budgeting, repairs, energy efficiency, and closing.
  • Other Resources – Assistance with enrollment into the First Home Club™ The Housing Council staff  will assist you with determining how to reach your saving goal by enrolling you in this $4 to $1 matched savings program.  For every $1 you save, the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York will match it with $4 up to a maximum of $7500.
  • Please call 585-546-3700 ext 3035 to sign up for an orientation session and class. Please see schedules below.
  • Email for more information or if you are unable to attend an orientation session. You may also call 585-546-3700 if you are unable to attend an orientation session.

2018 First Time Homebuyer Orientation Class Schedule

First Time Homebuyer Application

2018 First Time Homebuyer Education Class Schedule

When accessing our services if you need assistance due to a language barrier, mobility impairments, visual or hearing impairments or other disabilities please let us know in advance so we can provide the necessary accommodations.