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$200B in Housing Assistance Included in Proposed HEROES Act

The House of Representatives on Sunday passed the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act (HEROES Act). The $3 trillion legislation was approved by a vote of 208-199. 

A summary by the American Action Forum states the HEROES Act would provide around $200 billion in additional housing assistance. 

The CARES Act provided financial and legal assistance for renters and mortgage holders with a federally-backed mortgage. The American Action Forum said the HEROES act expands the financial assistant and legal protection to “virtually all” renters and mortgage holders, including prohibiting foreclosure for non-payment for up to a year 

The proposed legislation would provide $75 billion to state housing agencies for them to make available to homeowners for assistance with mortgage payments, property taxes and insurance, utilities, and other costs. 

Also, mortgage holders would receive protections against forbearance for a period of 12 months, and forbearance would automatically be provided for up to 60 days for any borrower who fails to make a payment for 60 days. 

The American Action Forum states that, if requested by the borrowers, forbearance must be extended for up to one year. 

Among the provisions brought on by the CARES Act was mortgage forbearance plans by federal agencies. Black Knight’s latest numbers report nearly 9% of all mortgage loans are in forbearance as of May 15. This represents 4.7 million homeowners, which is up from 4.5 million loans from the prior week. 

The latest numbers have been enhanced to include loans that were in forbearance but not previously reported as “COVID-19-related.”

About 7% of mortgage loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are now in forbearance, while 12.4% of FHA and VA-backed loans are in forbearance. Just over 9% of the portfolio and privately securitized loans are also in forbearance.

In terms of loan numbers, that’s 27.9 million GSE loans, 12.1 million FHA and VA loans, and 13 million other mortgage loans.

In total dollar amount across all loan types, the total unpaid principal balance on loans in forbearance is $1 trillion.

About Author: Mike Albanese

Mike Albanese is a reporter for DS News and MReport. He is a University of Alabama graduate with a degree in journalism and a minor in communications. He has worked for publications—both print and online—covering numerous beats. A Connecticut native, Albanese currently resides in Lewisville.
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