Applications are now being taken for the Longtime Homeowners Assistance (LHA) program for 2022. In 2021, the LHA was a pilot program created by the Board of Commissioners that provided grants to homeowners for assistance in paying property taxes. The goal of the LHA is to provide property tax bill assistance to help people stay in their homes.
The board approved several changes for 2022 to boost participation, including reducing the requirement to have owned and lived in the home from 10 years to five years. The changes formalized policies for heir’s properties and those owned by Family Trusts to provide assistance based on the income of the persons who live in the household and not all the heirs or members of the trust.
Online Program Application
- Have owned and lived in Orange County home for at least 5 years and
- Earn at or below 80% Area Median Income (AMI), which is determined by household size:
|Household size||Household income|
Table for Area Median Income
The Orange County Housing Department administers the LHA program in collaboration with the Orange County Tax Office and Finance Departments. Homeowners can submit applications and supporting documents between August 1 through December 1, 2022 in a few different ways:
ONLINE: Applications and materials can be submitted online
DROPOFF: Paper Applications and drop-off boxes are available at Orange County Housing offices
Hillsborough- Whitted Building, 300 W Tryon St
Chapel Hill, Southern Human Services Center, 2501 Homestead Rd
GET HELP: Contact the Housing Helpline for assistance in completing LHA applications
Once staff receive application materials, they will be back in touch about any other needed materials and/or the status of the application.
One change for 2022 is that all LHA grants will be made after the December 1, 2022 application deadline. If the demand for assistance is more than available funds, the Housing Department will use a prioritization for assistance based on applicant's age, length of time owning and living in the home, and the homeowner’s tax burden (percentage of annual income needed to pay property tax bill).
The Orange County Board of Commissioners designated $250,000 for the 2022 program. The county will apply any approved LHA funding directly onto the applicant's tax bill. If the homeowner has already paid their tax bill, the County will send the overage to the applicant.