Employer-Assisted Housing

Wilkes University has established an Employer Assisted Housing (EAH) program to aid in the revitalization of neighborhoods in and around campus and throughout the City of Wilkes-Barre.

This benefit is extended to all full-time employees who have successfully completed ninety (90) calendar days of service. If spouses or domestic partners are both eligible employees of Wilkes University, only (1) one loan will be made available.

Eligible employees may receive either a $5,000 or $10,000 forgivable loan for purchase of a primary residence in the city of Wilkes-Barre.  Loans can be used to defray down payment, closing costs or points on the purchase.  A $5,000 loan may be granted for purchase of a primary residence within the Wilkes-Barre city limits.  A $10,000 loan may be granted based on proximity to the university campus.  A map which specifically outlines the eligible areas and amounts can be found in the Human Resources Department. Employees are encouraged to review the map prior to applying for Employer-Assisted Housing to ensure the property is within the eligible area.

Loan approval is contingent upon available program funding. Loans are offered to employees on a first-come, first served basis. The entire loan will be provided to the employee at the time of purchase.

Loan Forgiveness/Tax Consequences

The University will forgive 20% of the loan each year over a five year period of employment from the issuance date of the loan. Employees who leave the University prior to the conclusion of the five-year period are responsible for reimbursing the University for any outstanding funds due. Any compensation due to employee by the University at the time employment ends will be used to offset any outstanding funds due. Loan forgiveness may have tax consequences and the employee is responsible for any and all taxes.

Application Procedures

Please complete the Employer-Assisted Housing (EAH) Loan Application and submit to Human Resources for approval. A copy of a fully executed property purchase contract and complete mortgage lender application must be attached to the completed form.

Conditional Reservation

Employees who are just starting to look for a home in the city of Wilkes-Barre can request a Conditional Reservation for a loan. If approved, employees can use a Conditional Reservation with lenders to certify that down payment support is available through the Wilkes EAH program. Conditional Reservations expire 90 days after the initial approval. Employees must complete and submit a the Employer-Assisted Housing (EAH) Loan Application for Conditional Reservation and submit all necessary attachments and information to Human Resources.

Additional Programs/Opportunities

Grant funding for property improvements in the area of downtown Wilkes-Barre bounded by Ross, South Franklin, South Main, Horton and River Streets may be available through The Schiowitz Grass Roots Housing Initiative Fund of The Luzerne Foundation. Although the University exercises no authority to approve or deny grants, employees are encouraged to contact The Luzerne Foundation at (570)714-1570 to obtain an application or more information.

Additional homeowner programs, initiatives and information may be available thru the Federal, State and Local governments.

Effective Date: 8/25/2006
Revised: 10/2013
Reviewed: 11/2018