Relief is on its way for some homeowners in Louisiana and Mississippi whose homes were damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Isaac. Freddie Mac announced on Tuesday that it will implement three disaster relief policies designed to ease the pressure on homeowners with mortgages owned or guaranteed by the organization and who live in regions declared to be Major Disaster Areas by the President.
The policies are being pushed by the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, which “strongly encourages servicers to help affected borrowers with Freddie Mac-owned loans.” The three relief strategies outlined in the organization’s disaster relief plan are:
- Suspending foreclosure and eviction proceedings for up to 12 months
- Waiving assessments of penalties or late feeds against borrowers with disaster-damaged homes
- Not reporting forbearance or delinquencies caused by the disaster to the nation’s credit bureaus
In addition to these, Freddie Mac also expects servicers to help borrowers monitor and coordinate their home insurance claim processes and provide homeowners with information regarding local, state or federal disaster assistant programs, such as FEMA, the Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Federal Housing Administration (FHA).
“Freddie Mac has authorized the nation’s mortgage servicers to provide a full range of mortgage relief options to affected borrowers with mortgages owned or guaranteed by Freddie Mac,” said Tracy Mooney, Senior Vice President of Single-Family Servicing and Real Estate Owned at Freddie Mac.
According to a recent report on WashingtonPost.com, Hurricane Isaac is believed to have damaged at least 13,000 homes across the state of Louisiana. Those numbers were announced by a state emergency official on Tuesday and were called “preliminary” by Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness spokeswoman, Christina Stephens. In another report released by CBSNews.com on Monday, September 3, the damage total is estimated to be around $2 billion.
Freddie Mac is one of the largest mortgage financiers in the United States. According to its website, the organization provides home loans to one in four Americans. Even if your loan is not owned by Freddie Mac, if it has been damaged or destroyed by the recent hurricane (and you live in one of the Major Disaster Areas), call your servicer today to see what mortgage relief options are being offered to you.
Carol Wilson has been reporting on the insurance and mortgage industry for over a decade. Currently working as a freelance reporter and blogger for several online media outlets, Carol contributes much of her work to the online business insurance resource, www.BusinessInsurance.org. Feel free to contact her with any questions or comments at Wilson.Carol24@gmail.com.