Guide for Homeowners in this Pandemic
Updated: Mar 16, 2021
We can’t believe we are writing the word PANDEMIC. 2020 was supposed to be the year for everyone and now here we are fighting for our lives. We truly hope everyone is safe and continues to have faith that we will recover quickly.
As homeowners, you have different worries and concerns. We are here to guide you in the right direction as best as we can. We are also providing a free 30 minutes virtual meeting via zoom if you need someone to speak with or have questions. Click here to request an appointment.
Here is some information you need to know:
1. Should I pay my mortgage?
Yes, if you can pay your mortgage, pay it. Please do NOT call your mortgage holder since they are assisting other homeowners who need immediate help.
If you can’t pay because of COVID, call your bank. It may take a while to get a loan officer on the phone. Please be sure to read this blog carefully so you are prepared.
2. What are mortgage holders providing?
Forbearance is when your mortgage servicer or lender allows you to pause or reduce your mortgage payments for a limited period of time. Forbearance doesn’t erase what you owe – you’ll have to repay any missed or reduced payments in the future. If your income is restored, reach out to your servicer and resume making payments as soon as you can.
3. What about if my home is in foreclosure?
Moratoriums suspend or stop foreclosure. Loan holders have suspended all foreclosure and as of March 18, 2020, there is a 60 day hold.
CARES Act Relief Options
If your mortgage is a federally backed mortgage, you have two mortgage relief options under the CARES Act:
First, your lender or loan servicer may not foreclose on you for 60 days after March 18, 2020. Specifically, the CARES Act prohibits lenders and servicers from beginning a judicial or non-judicial foreclosure against you, or from finalizing a foreclosure judgment or sale, during this period of time.
Second, if you experience financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic, you have a right to request a forbearance for up to 180 days. You also have the right to request one extension for another up to 180 days. You must contact your loan servicer to request this forbearance. There will be no additional fees, penalties or additional interest (beyond scheduled amounts) added to your account. You do not need to submit additional documentation to qualify other than your claim to have a pandemic-related financial hardship.
4. How to request forbearance or mortgage relief?
Call your servicer!
You may be waiting for hours, but be patient. Banks are experiencing a tremendous value of calls and they are also trying to keep their employees safe as well. Employees have been sent home and hours have been cut. Be prepared to expedite the call. Have your mortgage statement available and employer’s information, if you can determine how long you will need the forbearance and a list of assets such as bank accounts.
5. Will this affect my credit history?
Being in the industry of helping homeowners, you have no idea how many errors the bank makes, so please have everything in writing and keep all documents. Keep an eye on your credit history and if any damages/errors are reported a specialist can help. Get more information about credit repair here.
Where to get additional help
If you need help working with your loan holder or understanding your options please contact us and schedule a free 30 minute virtual meeting via zoom. If you don’t want to do a virtual meeting, please contact us at 973-937-7ECG(7324) or email us at ecgpropertysolutions.com.
The following are further professionals to contact:
HUD-Approved Housing Counselors. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)-approved housing counselors can discuss options with you if you’re having trouble paying your mortgage loan or reverse mortgage loan. This may also include forbearance or a modified payment program.
Credit Counselors. Reputable credit counseling organizations generally non-profit organizations that can advise you on your money and debts, and help you with a budget. Some may also help you negotiate with creditors. One great credit counselors service is credit reversals.
How college students are managing their finance is important as well in the pandemic. They are our future and must be educated. Bankrate is a great source to help you built your credit during this time.
Home insurance companies are a great source and they also should be contacted in these times. Most insurance companies are willing to put a hold on your account. Contact your insurance company or contact a reputable insurance broker.
Mortgage brokers have all the in and outs of all the processes. They may even be able to help you refinance your loan or help you apply for another loan to get into a new home.
Us! We are here to help you in any way we can. Call us at 973-937-7ECG(7324).