THE BASIS POINT

Mortgage payment deferrals that helped 1m+ homeowners keep homes during pandemic now permanent

 

Homeowners with hardships can now pause loan payments. Paused payments are added to loan balance, but payment stays same.

 

During the pandemic, FHFA — the regulator who oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, who back America’s mortgage market — allowed lenders to complete more than 1 million payment deferrals during the pandemic.

This meant borrowers who lost jobs/income temporarily could stay in their homes.

These payment deferrals allow homeowners with hardships to keep the same monthly mortgage payment by moving past-due amounts to the end of the loan as a non-interest bearing balance, due and payable at maturity, sale, refinance, or payoff.

If you’re having a hardship, you can do this for up to 6 payments.

This was smart policy that stabilized the housing market — and therefore the economy — when it was most needed.

Based on the success of this program, the FHFA is making this part of regular policy for all borrowers with eligible hardships. It’s a positive policy development.

If you’re experiencing a hardship contact your lender about how to defer your payments. As with all programs, there are nuances, like how much documentation they need to approve your deferral. But your lender is there to help if you need it, so ask them about this program.

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Check It Out:

FHFA's 2023 Payment Deferral Policies for Borrowers In Hardship

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