The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and Community Development Block Grant – Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) are listed in the certification rule as “HUD Programs where housing counseling is funded under the HUD program.” How are the CDBG and CDBG-DR programs affected by the Final Rule on housing counselor certification?
Date Published: December 2016
Housing counseling is an eligible activity under several different categories of activities in the CDBG and CDBG-DR programs. Depending on the program design and the intended beneficiaries, housing counseling may be eligible as a public service (under 24 CFR 570.201(e)), as part of a homeownership assistance activity (24 CFR 570.201(n)), or as a housing service in support of the HOME program (24 CFR 570.201(k)). If a recipient uses CDBG or CDBG-DR to fund a housing counseling program that meets the definition at 24 CFR 5.100, either directly or through a subrecipient, the housing counseling must be provided by a HUD certified housing counselor working for an agency approved to participate in HUD’s Housing Counseling program, by the Final Compliance Date.
If a recipient (grantee or subrecipient) uses CDBG or CDBG-DR funds to carry out an activity that does not meet the definition at 24 CFR 5.100, then the agency providing the services does not have to become approved to participate in HUD’s Housing Counseling program, and its staff do not have to become HUD certified housing counselors.