MCLEAN, VA – January 31, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — In an effort to give families and communities affected by Hurricane Sandy more time to recover, Freddie Mac (OTC: FMCC) announced that it is extending its mandatory suspension of evictions and foreclosures involving homes secured by mortgages owned or guaranteed by Freddie Mac through April 30, 2013. The extensions build on Freddie Mac’s November 13 announcement [PDF]of storm relief for borrowers with homes or places of employment located in presidentially declared Major Disaster Areas where federal Individual Assistance programs are available. Freddie Mac is one of the nation’s largest investors in residential mortgages.
Since Hurricane Sandy struck the Northeast, Freddie Mac has been continuously providing relief and support to borrowers and communities across the affected region. Freddie Mac staff are working on-site with hundreds of families at local borrower outreach events and training housing counselors on Freddie Mac’s disaster relief options for borrowers. Freddie Mac has joined forces with local non-profit organizations and federal, state and local government task forces and commissions to expedite mortgage assistance and provide resources, including the short-term use of suitable REO homes as rental housing.
After consultation with the Federal Housing Finance Agency, Freddie Mac is extending its disaster relief policies to authorize mortgage servicers to:
- Automatically suspend for 90-days eviction lockouts and foreclosure sales involving Freddie Mac owned-or guaranteed mortgages secured by homes in eligible disaster areas.
- Verbally grant 90-day forbearances to all borrowers in eligible disaster areas, including borrowers with mortgages modified under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) or who are currently in a HAMP or Standard Modification Trial Period Plan.
- Expedite the distribution of insurance proceeds on storm damage claims to speed up repairs of storm-damaged homes.
- Extend forbearance and repayment plans for up to 12 months on a case-by-case basis without prior Freddie Mac approval. Freddie Mac strongly encourages borrowers in eligible disaster areas to contact their servicers to discuss their situation.
Today’s announcement builds on Freddie Mac’s standard disaster relief policies, which also instruct servicers to waive late fees or penalties against borrowers with disaster-damaged homes; and not report forbearance or delinquencies caused by the disaster to the nation’s credit bureaus.
Attributable to Tracy Mooney, Senior Vice President of Single-Family Servicing and Real Estate Owned at Freddie Mac:
“Extending our policies is common sense given the extent of Hurricane Sandy’s impact on borrowers and servicers. By working together with servicers and non-profit organizations we can help drive the recovery now underway in neighborhoods across the region.”
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.