Unemployed Homeowners Get Mortgage Relief

Unemployed home owners who have mortgages backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac may be eligible for up to a 12-month reprieve from paying their mortgage or paying reduced payments for that time period.

The mortgage giants’ program currently allows six months of relief to the unemployed. Freddie Mac announced that the changes will take effect Feb. 1. However, Freddie officials say extended one-year forbearance period will be temporary, and borrowers will still be responsible for eventually owing the payments they’ve missed.

Fannie Mae announced it also would be implementing a similar extension to its unemployed aid program.

“These expanded forbearance periods will provide families facing prolonged periods of unemployment with a greater measure of security by giving them more time to find new employment and resolve their delinquencies,” says Tracy Mooney, a Freddie Mac senior vice president. “We believe this will put more families back on track to successful long-term home ownership.”

Source: “Fannie, Freddie to Give Unemployed Up to 12-Month Break on Mortgages,” Dow Jones Business News (Jan. 6, 2012)

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