Renovate & Repair Loan Program

Program Related Hot Links

Homeowners & Homebuyers

The purpose of the Keystone Renovate & Repair Loan Program (R&R loan) is to help:

  • Prevent homeowners from becoming victims of unscrupulous lending practices (i.e., high interest rates and costs, more money borrowed than needed, pre-payment penalties, etc.).
  • Homeowners prioritize their home repair spending so that the work that they get done is what their home really needs.
  • Improve Pennsylvania’s aging housing stock for its current residents and future generations.

A R&R loan can be used to pay for repairs and improvements that increase the basic livability of the home, including additions and construction, that makes the home safer, more energy efficient, or more accessible to people with disabilities or people who are elderly. R&R loans can also be used to remove or fix code violations, hook up to municipal water and sewer systems, and improve or install code-compliant septic or well systems. In addition, R&R loans can be a source of payment for emergency repairs to critical life–safety systems in the homes, as long as the loan application is made to the Local Program Administrator within 30 days of the repair.

This program is designed to help households with a combined household income no greater than approximately 150 percent of the statewide median income (adjusted upwards in high-cost areas) rehabilitate and/or improve their homes. Not only does the R&R loan provide an attractive interest rate, but it also provides the homeowner with help determining the repairs and/or improvements to be done. In this regard, the program provides much more than a loan–it provides peace of mind in knowing that the right home repairs are done and were completed in a timely manner with quality workmanship. Luxury and purely cosmetic items such as hot tubs, pools, gazebos, etc., are not permissible under the program.

Where do I start?

Interested homeowners need to have:

  • Household income within limits. (R&R Income Limits).
  • Satisfactory credit (typically credit scores above 620).
  • An interest in repairing or improving their permanent, primary residence, which must be located in Pennsylvania.
  • Currently own the home or be in the process of purchasing it.
  • Adequate income to support a monthly loan payment.
  • Additional qualifications will be described by the Local Program Administrator (LPA) at the time of application.

If you would like to learn more about the R&R program, contact PHFA at 1.800.822.1174 to get a referral to the LPA in your area.

We at PHFA strive to help borrowers find programs that fit their needs; however, some borrower's needs may be better met through other programs. Our R&R Alternatives has information about additional grant and loan programs that may be able to help you fix your home or make it accessible.

The R&R Loan Program also has funds available to homeowners who wish to convert a multi-unit home back into a singlefamily residence. The Conversion Initiative allows homebuyers, homeowners, or landlords to finance the cost of converting a multi-unit property, consisting of any number of units, back to a singlefamily residence for which it was originally intended. Properties can be those that were initially built as a singlefamily residence but were converted into apartments or offices. It could also include mixed-use properties where the level(s) above the storefront are being converted back to a single family home. To find out more about this program and the availability, contact PHFA at 1.800.822.1174.

Why choose R&R?

There are many benefits in choosing the R&R loan over a traditional home equity loan. Some of these benefits include:

  • Often lower rates than traditional home equity loans.
  • Low fees.
  • Borrow up to a maximum of $35,000 or 120 percent of the home's value for approved home repairs or renovations (minimum of $2,500).
  • 10, 15, or 20-year fixed rate loan.
  • No pre-payment penalty.
  • Help determining what repairs should be made and how much they should cost, as well as help with selecting qualified and reputable contractors.
  • Most traditional home equity loans only allow homeowners to borrow up to 90 percent of their home's value.

How do I apply?

To apply for a loan you should contact a Local Program Administrator in your area. When you first contact your LPA, they can tell you if what you want to do to your home is allowed with R&R funds and they will ask you some pre-screening questions to see if you might qualify for a loan.