MCLEAN, VA – February 22, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) today took steps to cut the time it’s taking servicers to get insurance proceeds to borrowers to start repairs on homes damaged by Hurricane Sandy and secured by Freddie Mac-owned or -guaranteed mortgages. Freddie Mac is one of the nation’s largest investors in single-family and multifamily mortgages.
Attributable to Tracy Mooney, Senior Vice President of Single-Family Servicing and Real Estate Owned at Freddie Mac:
“Our goal is to simplify and clarify our policies so servicers can put insurance proceeds to work helping families and repairing homes without delay. Today’s Guide Bulletin re-emphasizes Freddie Mac’s commitment to do everything it can to get insurance money into the hands of eligible borrowers recovering from Hurricane Sandy as quickly as possible.”
- A February 22 Freddie Mac Guide Bulletin [PDF] gives servicers discretion on the timing and amount of insurance proceeds to release to eligible borrowers whose homes experienced some, but not catastrophic, damage by Hurricane Sandy.
- This means servicers now have the authority to provide eligible borrowers with funds for repairs and restoration either as a single payment, regardless of the amount, or as a series of payments made as different stages of work are completed. However, in exercising discretion, servicers were also told to apply the same policies and processes uniformly in order to provide borrowers repairing their homes with clarity and consistency.
- Freddie Mac also reminded servicers they are already authorized to release insurance proceeds up to the greater of $40,000 or 10% of the unpaid principal balance if the home was totally or almost totally destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.
- The February 22 Freddie Mac Guide Bulletin also emphasizes that servicers must not delay the release of insurance proceeds to eligible borrowers for loss of contents or, if they were displaced by the storm, living expenses.
- Freddie Mac’s disaster relief policies [PDF] apply to all Freddie Mac borrowers with primary residences, second homes or investment properties in presidentially declared Major Disaster Areas where federal Individual Assistance programs are available.
For more information on mortgage payment relief, homeowners should contact their mortgage servicer — the company to which they send their monthly mortgage payment — or call Freddie Mac at 800-FREDDIE. Borrowers can determine if Freddie Mac owns their mortgage by using our loan look-up tool at https://ww3.freddiemac.com/corporate. Freddie Mac’s general disaster relief policies are posted online at http://www.freddiemac.com/singlefamily/service/disastermgmt.html.
Freddie Mac was established by Congress in 1970 to provide liquidity, stability and affordability to the nation’s residential mortgage markets. Freddie Mac supports communities across the nation by providing mortgage capital to lenders. Today Freddie Mac is making home possible for one in four homebuyers and is one of the largest sources of financing for multifamily housing. www.FreddieMac.com.