Around the holidays, it isn't unusual for lenders and brokers to suspend evictions and foreclosure temporarily for families that have fallen behind on their monthly mortgage payments. After many areas in the Northeast obtained substantial damage following Hurricane Sandy in October 2012, Freddie Mac did the same, providing many homeowners time to recover. A new report from the government-sponsored enterprise announced it is extending the suspension for homeowners living in major disaster areas.
According to the announcement, homes that have been financed through Freddie Mac will not have action taken against them until after April 30. In addition, the GSE has extended its relief policy after meeting with the Federal Housing Finance Agency.
One new addition is that foreclosure sales and eviction lockouts are to be automatically suspended for 90 days for properties located in disaster areas. Verbal 90-day forbearance grants are to be provided to those eligible, including those who have modified their mortgage through the Home Affordable Modification Program or who are in the Standard Modification Trial Period Plan.
"Extending our policies is common sense given the extent of Hurricane Sandy's impact on borrowers and servicers," said Tracy Mooney, senior vice president of single-family servicing and real estate owned at Freddie Mac. "By working together with servicers and non-profit organizations we can help drive the recovery now underway in neighborhoods across the region."