The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) today announced it is extending the date to March 31 for single-family homeowners with FHA-insured mortgages to request an initial forbearance from their mortgage servicer to defer their mortgage payments for up to six months. The move comes at the request of the Biden Administration, according to a press release.
"On the first day of his new Administration, President Biden took immediate actions to stem the economic devastation experienced by the nation’s hardworking families because of the pandemic,” said Acting HUD Secretary Matthew Ammon. "Today’s extension supports the President’s direction by providing more time for homeowners to seek mortgage payment relief.”
According to a press release, FHA requires mortgage servicers to provide up to six months of COVID-19 forbearance when a homeowner requests this assistance, and up to an additional six months of forbearance for homeowners who request an extension of the initial forbearance. Homeowners needing assistance must engage with their servicer to obtain an initial forbearance or to obtain an extension of the initial forbearance on or before the March 31 deadline.
Upon announcing the previous extension in October, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Single Family Housing Joe Gormley expounded on the importance of keeping up with payments when possible.
"It’s always in a homeowner’s best interest to make their mortgage payments if they are able. But for those who are struggling right now, we urge them to engage with their servicer immediately. And, if your servicer contacts you, it is crucial that you respond to them to let them know if you need assistance. The last thing FHA wants is for any homeowner to risk losing their homeownership investment if they are eligible for assistance.”
Tuesday's forbearance request extension aligns with FHA’s recent extension of its foreclosure and eviction moratoria, also extended through March 31.
Borrowers with FHA-insured mortgages seeking additional information on available options should visit FHA’s COVID-19 Resources for Homeowners web page on FHA.gov. Other borrowers are encouraged to visit the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Coronavirus Mortgage and Housing Assistance web pages.