Frequently Asked Questions

Housing Program FAQs

  1. Does the City have funding for home repairs and/or emergency renovations?
    No funding is available through the City at this time.
  2. Is there a waiting list for City funding?
    No, the City no longer maintains a waiting list.
  3. Are there other housing resources for City residents?
    North Country Housing Council/St. Lawrence County Housing Council
    19 Main Street, Canton

    St. Lawrence Community Development Program (CDP)
    1 Commerce Lane, Canton

    Find Affordable Housing
  4. Is there anything to assist with first-time homebuyers?
    This program is not available directly through the City. However, the State of New York Mortgage Agency (SONYMA) offers five mortgage programs to assist first-time homebuyers with the purchase of a home in New York State. Call SONYMA Information Hub: 1-800-382-HOME (4663) or go online to SONYMA First Time Homebuyers

Amnesty Program FAQs

  1. What is amnesty?
    Amnesty is the City's policy, effective January 25, 2010, to forgive mortgage loans made with New York State Office of Community Renewal and the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds for home purchases for low to moderate income households. The amnesty policy enables the City to release its lien on any owner-occupied property where the note is older than 5 years. On notes that are less than 5 years in maturity, the City will suspend payment requirements and reduce the amount of debt owed by 20% per year until year 5, when the note will be forgiven.
  2. How do I know if I am eligible for amnesty?
    Owners who have an owner-occupied, residential property with a City held lien against it where the note/lien is older than 5 years or, owners who have an owner-occupied, residential property with a City held lien against it where the note/lien is less than 5 years old, but matures at a date that extends beyond a 5 year period are eligible. Owners of non-residential or non-owner-occupied property are not eligible. Amnesty applications are available online by clicking here: Amnesty Application (PDF), or in the City Planning Office. You can read more information here: Amnesty Handbook (PDF)
  3. Is there a fee to apply for amnesty?
    Yes, there is a $150 non-refundable fee.

Mortgage Subordination FAQs

  1. What is mortgage subordination?
    Mortgage subordination is when a current mortgage holder agrees to allow a new mortgage (i.e. remortgage) to be placed against the property ahead of the current holders position. This shuffling of mortgages and positioning is done all at the same time. The mortgage position is determined by the date (oldest mortgage has 1st position) unless a subordination agreement is filed.
  2. How do I apply?
    To apply for subordination there is a $100 per lien non-refundable fee. Subordination applications are available online by clicking here: Subordination Request Form (PDF), or in the City Planning Office. You can read the City's guidelines for subordination here: Subordination Guidelines (PDF)

Utility Bill Assistance FAQs

  1. What resources can help with my utility bills?
    • Home Energy Assistance Program HEAP – fuel and weatherization assistance
    • New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, NYSERDA energy assistance related resources
    • New York Energy Smart - programs to reduce residential energy costs make your home more energy efficient - Energy Smart NY