Mortgage Relief Options After Hurricane Ida – Forbes Advisor – ForbesFebruary 10, 2022 By admin
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Updated: Dec 17, 2021, 5:35pm
Hurricane Ida was among the most destructive hurricanes to hit the U.S. in recent memory. The recovery will likely take weeks or more depending on the area, as the deadly storm tore through several states from Louisiana to New England, leaving people without power, water and homes.
In Lafourche Parish, for example, one of the hardest-hit areas in Louisiana, an estimated 75% of structures have been damaged or destroyed. CoreLogic, a data analytics firm, estimates that losses to residential and commercial properties in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama alone could range between $27 billion and $40 billion. And Accuweather is projecting up to $95 billion in damages nationwide, making it one of the costlier hurricanes in a decade.
For homeowners, the financial burden can be devastating. Many people are facing the loss of property and exorbitant repair costs—which could include anything from flooding to structural damage. And some folks are faced with paying the mortgage while also spending money on temporary living arrangements.
If you’re unable to pay your mortgage because of financial setbacks due to Hurricane Ida, you might be able to pause payments (through forbearance) or be eligible for other assistance programs from your mortgage provider.
Many mortgage lenders, as well as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, are offering relief to homeowners affected by Hurricane Ida.
The first thing you should do is contact your mortgage service provider if you can’t make your regular monthly payments. Find out what options are available to you. The worst scenario is to avoid contacting your service provider and falling into foreclosure.
If your property was damaged, be sure to have information about your homeowner’s insurance handy to speed up the process when calling your lender.
Keep in mind, there are many federal assistance programs—from direct payments to finding temporary shelter—through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to people in hard-hit areas.
Forbes Advisor compiled a list of what some lenders and the government-sponsored enterprises (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) are doing to help customers. Even if your lender isn’t on this particular list, they might have assistance plans available to you upon request.
If you have a mortgage backed by Fannie Mae, help is available for eligible homeowners whose property was damaged by Hurricane Ida. According to Fannie Mae’s guidelines for single-family mortgages impacted by a natural disaster, homeowners have the following options:
Homeowners won’t incur any late fees or other penalties if they’re enrolled in a disaster relief mortgage program. They might also be eligible for financial assistance to help them make up any missed payments.
“We urge everyone in the path of the storm to focus on their safety,” said Cyndi Danko, vice president, single-family risk management at Fannie Mae, in a statement. “Fannie Mae is committed to ensuring assistance is available to homeowners and renters in need, and we encourage residents impacted by this storm to seek assistance as soon as possible.”
If you’re unsure if Fannie Mae backs your home, you can go to their website and use its mortgage lookup tool.
Freddie Mac offers practically the same assistance as Fannie Mae for home loans it backs. According to its disaster policy, there are several avenues eligible borrowers can take for help.
To find out if Freddie Mac owns your mortgage, you can use the loan lookup tool on its website.
Eligible Chase mortgage customers in FEMA-declared areas will not have to pay late fees for mortgage, credit card, business banking, auto loans and leases. If you incur a late fee, Chase will refund the money. This policy is in place until Sept. 26.
For borrowers in FEMA-declared disaster areas, Freedom Mortgage may:
Glenn Brunker, president, Ally Home, said that Ally is “committed to doing what we can for those impacted by this storm.” This includes giving borrowers a variety of relief options such as:
Fifth Third Bank mortgage customers impacted by Hurricane Ida may take advantage of the following disaster assistance options:
For borrowers who opt into a forbearance plan, there are several ways you can repay the amount owed once the 90-day forbearance expires:
LoanDepot customers might be able to qualify for a forbearance plan, which will either reduce or pause your payments if you were affected by Hurricane Ida.
TD Bank will help mortgage customers experiencing financial hardship because of Hurricane Ida. According to a TD Bank spokesperson, assistance is available upon request and may include refunding any late payment fees and temporarily waiving late payment fees.
Flagstar Bank is offering forbearance to people impacted by Hurricane Ida if they’re unable to make payments on their mortgage. Even borrowers who are or were previously in forbearance due to Covid-19 are eligible to extend their forbearance based on certain guidelines.
Natalie Campisi is a Los Angeles-based reporter who covers mortgages and housing news for Forbes Advisor. Previously, she was the senior mortgage reporter and analyst for Bankrate. She’s also covered unemployment on Capitol Hill and news stories for the Tampa Tribune. Her work has appeared in publications such as CNBC, The Chicago Tribune, and MSN.
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