Suspend Your Mortgage Payment And Keep Your Home With COVID-19 Forbearance

Suspend Your Mortgage Payment And Keep Your Home With COVID-19 Forbearance

If you have lost your job, received a layoff notice or are otherwise struggling to pay your mortgage, it’s critical that you reach out to your creditors and mortgage servicer immediately and request assistance. Most lenders, especially mortgage companies, have developed a thoughtful COVID-19 response that includes offering customers a way to suspend their mortgage payments, keep their homes, avoid late fees and not suffer any negative reporting to the credit bureaus. Most also provide you an option to add the past due payments to the end of your loan instead having to figure out how to pay back a huge lump sum after three or six months of payment suspensions.

As of today, Johns Hopkins is reporting that approximately 835,316 people have tested positive for coronavirus in the United States, and 45,950 people have died from it. The COVID-19 is tragically taking lives and killing jobs. In the past month, it wiped out a decade of job gains causing 22 million—and counting—to file unemployment claims. Consequently, many of you are understandably anxious. And when you aren’t busy doing all you can to stay coronavirus free, you might find yourself spending an inordinate amount of time wondering whether you’ll even have a job from week to week. Then, there’s still just regular life—your locked-down life that you are impatiently waiting to get back to normal (whatever that will be).

Things are dire for millions of people as the public health crisis has created an outright financial crisis. While you work through your employment—or unemployment—struggles, here’s an outline of what’s available to save your mortgage. Below are options for government-backed loans as well as conventional loans via three of largest private mortgage lenders in the United States.

Government-backed mortgages.

If you have an FHA, VA or USDA loan, you have a government-insured mortgage loan. These loans are backed by the Federal Housing Authority (FHA), the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) or the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). It states here that you can also apply if you have a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan. The new law known as the CARES Act provides mortgage relief protection for those who have government-backed loans. As such, immediate help is available for you if you find yourself struggling to make your mortgage payments.

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The first thing you need to do is contact your mortgage service provider. If you have a government-backed loan and find yourself either directly or indirectly impacted by COVID-19 such that you are experiencing a financial hardship, make this call immediately. All you need to do is explain that you want to apply for the COVID-19 mortgage forbearance program. You will then be instructed how to apply. The best part is that the program stipulates that your mortgage lender will not require you to provide documents.

To get started just call your lender. You can also review this document for more details. It’s been put together by the FHA, but the process is applicable for all government-backed loans.

Conventional mortgages.

Even if you don’t have a government-insured loan, immediately call your mortgage servicer. Due to COVID-19, most all major lenders have put together programs to address the pressing needs of customers experiencing a financial hardship during this time. Here’s what three of the largest private lenders are doing.

Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo has announced that you can request a payment suspension for an initial three-month period, and then (based on your circumstances), you can apply for a longer payment suspension period. Wells Fargo also informs that they will not be charging any late fees while your payments are in suspension, and they won’t report any negative information to the credit bureaus about your account being in past-due status.

Even more, to help you get back on your feet once you can start making your mortgage payments again, Wells Fargo is offering a variety of options to repay the suspended payments, including a loan modification where you can roll your suspended payments to the end of your loan instead of being required to make the full deferred payment directly after the suspension is lifted.

On their website they go on to state that they are prepared to suspend residential foreclosures, evictions and even automobile repossessions. Customers can also apply for financial assistance with credit cards as well.

Bank of America

Bank of America has announced that you can request to have your payment suspended for up to three months or longer via two options (1) payment deferral and (2) payment forbearance. With Bank of America, and depending on your specific circumstances, your payments might either be suspended (delayed) or completely erased, and they won’t apply any late charges for past-due payments.

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When you speak with them, they will determine which option is best for you. It also appears that once you start making payments again, the past-due amounts could be added to the end of your loan if you make that request. Learn more by checking out their website.

Quicken Loans

Quicken Loans has announced that you can request to have your mortgage payment suspended. If you are experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19, Quicken is offering an initial three-month forbearance option which will place your mortgage in pause status. After the crisis is over, they will work with you to determine how best to move forward and get you back on track.

The late payments would never be reported to the credit bureaus, and you wouldn’t be required to pay late fees. Call your mortgage servicer, or check out their website for more details.

Take immediate action.

COVID-19 is wreaking havoc on our entire lives. If you are struggling financially right now and having trouble paying your mortgage, don’t wait to take action. Get on these opportunities immediately. Contact your lender today, explain your situation and get the help you need. Finally, if your lender wasn’t listed here, chances are it has a similar kind of COVID-19 program in place, but you still have to take the first step and reach out.