The VA offers 4 different grants for qualifying Veterans and Servicemembers to assist them with the building, remodeling, or purchasing an adapted home. The four grants are:
- Specially adapted housing (SAH) grants,
- Special housing adaptation (SHA) grants,
- Temporary Residence Adaptation (TRA) grants, and
- Home Improvements and Structural Alterations (HISA) grants.
1. Specially adapted housing (SAH) grants help veterans with certain service-connected disabilities live independently in a barrier-free environment. SAH grants can be used to:
- Construct a specially adapted home on land to be acquired
- Build a home on land already owned if it is suitable for specially adapted housing
- Remodel an existing home if it can be made suitable for specially adapted housing
- Apply the grant against the unpaid principal mortgage balance of an adapted home already acquired without the assistance of a VA grant.
A SAH grant, which allows up to $81,080 (2018), can be used a maximum of three times up to the allowable dollar amount. Veterans with certain permanent service-connected conditions qualify for an SAH grant if their service-connected conditions:
- Are permanently and totally disabling,
- Preclude locomotion without the aid of braces, canes, or a wheelchair due to the loss, or loss of use of
- both lower extremities,
- one lower extremity together with residuals of organic disease or injury, which so affects the functions of balance or propulsion, or
- one lower extremity, together with one upper extremity, which so affects the functions of balance or propulsion
- Result in the loss, or loss of use, of both upper extremities at or above the elbow, or
- Cause blindness in both eyes, having light perception only, combined with the loss or loss of use of one lower extremity.
- Include certain severe burn injuries
Veterans who served on or after September 11, 2001, and become permanently disabled on or after that date may also be eligible for SAH benefits if they have the loss or loss of use of one or more lower extremities which so affects the functions of balance or propulsion as to preclude ambulating without the aid of braces, crutches, canes, or a wheelchair.
To apply for a SAH grant, fill out and submit VA Form 26-4555 Application in Acquiring Specially Adapted Housing or Special Home Adaptation Grant.
2. Special housing adaptation (SHA) grants help veterans with certain service-connected disabilities adapt or purchase a home to accommodate their disability. SHA grants can be used in the following ways:
- Adapt an existing home the veteran or a family member already owns in which the veteran resides
- Adapt a home the veteran or family member intends to purchase in which the veteran will live
- Help a veteran purchase a home already adapted in which the veteran will live
SHA provides for a grant amount up to $116,217 (2018). A SHA grant may also be used a maximum of up to three times until the maximum grant amount has been utilized. A SHA grant will be awarded where the veteran has a service-connected disability for one of the following:
- Blindness in both eyes with 5/200 visual acuity or less
- Anatomical loss or loss of use of both hands
- Certain severe burn injuries
- Certain severe respiratory injuries
To apply for a SHA grant, fill out and submit VA Form 26-4555 Application in Acquiring Specially Adapted Housing or Special Home Adaptation Grant.
3. Temporary Residence Adaptation grants
May be available to SAH/SHA eligible veterans and Servicemembers who are or will be temporarily residing in a home owned by a family member. This assistance, up to $35,593 (2018) for veterans eligible for a SAH grant or $6,355 (2018) for veterans eligible for the SHA grant, may be used to adapt the family member’s home to meet the veteran’s or Servicemember’s special needs at that time.
4. Home Improvements and Structural Alterations (HISA) grants
The VA Home Improvement and Structural Alteration (HISA) grant program helps veterans who are enrolled in the VA health care system and requires home improvements for the continuation of medical treatment or for basic access to the home and essential bathroom and sanitary facilities for veterans with certain disabilities. Unlike most other benefits shown on this page, HISA grants are available for both service-connected and nonservice-connected veterans (with different maximum amounts).
- Veterans with service-connected disabilities the home improvement benefit is $6,800 (2018)
- Veterans with non-service-connected disabilities the home home improvement benefit is $2,000 (2018)
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