Loan programs funded by public and private sources are available for purchasing AT, durable medical equipment (DME), home modifications, vehicles and vehicle modifications.
Massachusetts Assistive Technology Loan Program (MATLP)
The MATLP is state funded to give people with disabilities and their families access to low-interest cash loans to buy the assistive technology devices they need. Read more.
The MATLP is an alternative financing program funded through state and federal grants to the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission. It gives people with disabilities and their families access to low-interest cash loans to buy the assistive technology devices they need.
The program offers better interest rates than a traditional bank loan, and repayment lengths are based on the expected useful life of the device purchased. For example, loans for computers are usually repaid in three years, while vehicle modification loans can be repaid over a much longer time. This allows consumers to keep lower monthly payments by stretching them over longer periods.
This program can be an option for many AT needs, including the vocational needs of people who do not wish to approach their employer for reasonable accommodation (perhaps they are working for a small business) or for those who don't want to wait for assistance from Vocational Rehabilitation. If public or private medical providers do not consider a device "medically necessary," or if a school district won't fund a device (even after appeal), parents and others can apply to the MATLP.
Any Massachusetts resident who has a disability or is an elder and needs assistive technology is eligible for the program. Family members or friends may apply on behalf of someone else (including underage children), as long as the requested device is for use by the elder or person with a disability.
The MATLP is operated by Easter Seals Massachusetts and Easter Seals works in partnership with Sovereign Bank to handle the loan distribution.
MATLP program staff can help people through the loan application process. Applications and application assistance are also available at Independent Living Centers (ILCs) and Aging Services Access Points (ASAPs) throughout Massachusetts.The Sovereign Bank reviews prior credit history and the applicant's ability to make payments. Loans that are denied by the Sovereign Bank are reviewed by the MATLP loan committee for additional consideration.
How Much Can be Borrowed?
Most loans are between $500 and $25,000. Under some circumstances larger amounts can be borrowed. The applicant's ability to repay the loan amount will be a factor in how much they can borrow.
Home Modification Loan Program (HMLP)
The HMLP is state funded to provide low-interest and no-interest loans for people to who need access and/or safety modifications--like ramps and wider doorways--to their primary, permanent residence. Read more.
MRC's Home Modification Loan Program (HMLP) is a state funded program to provide low-interest and no-interest loans for people to who need access and/or safety modifications - like ramps and wider doorways - to their primary, permanent residence. People served include elders, adults with disabilities and children with disabilities.
Applicants may include any homeowner with a disability, any homeowner with a household member who has a disability, or a landlord with fewer than 10 units who rents to an individual with a disability.
Loan services are provided through regional provider agencies. These agencies can also provide resource materials for choosing and hiring architectural, design, and contracting professionals (but they cannot recommend specific contractors). They can also assist applicants with the application process.
How Much Can be Borrowed?
Based on income guidelines, individuals may borrow from $1000 to $30,000 (inclusive of all loan costs).
Central Bank Special Needs Loans
This Central Bank loan program provides fixed rate loans with longer repayment terms to help customers with special needs purchase AT, including vehicle and home modifications. Read more.
The Central Bank began this loan program in 1997 to provide funding for customers with special needs to purchase AT, including retrofitting motor vehicles and homes for those with special needs. Central Bank offers a fixed rate loan with more liberal underwriting guidelines (it's easier for people to qualify for this loan than a traditional loan), and it allows for longer repayment terms. For an application and information on loan rates.
Central Bank Loan Originations Department
Citizen's Bank EZ Home Improvement Loans
Citizen's Bank EZ Home Improvement Loans are for low and moderate income households (renters and owners). Read more.
Citizen's Bank provides qualified applicants with low interest loans for home improvements. Rates vary depending on loan term. Loans are available for under $1000 up to $10,000, and with terms from 12 to 84 months. These loans are not available in all areas of Massachusetts.
Digital Federal Credit Union Loans
Membership with the American Association of People with Disabilities provides access to the Digital Federal Credit Union.
The DCU offers "Access Loans" for AT, DME, and home modifications; and "Mobility Vehicle Loans" for vehicles and vehicle modifications. Qualified applicants may obtain Access Loans for 100% of the purchase amount, from $1,500 to $25,000 and with terms up to 72 months. (Higher amounts may be considered. Normal underwriting guidelines apply.) Mobility Vehicle Loans are available to qualified applicants from $5,000 to $100,000 with terms up to 120 months. Rates vary by applicant credit history.
Digital Federal Credit Union website
*Please note that information provided herein has no effect of law or regulation, and in no way constitutes an official notification of benefits.