By Charlestien Harris
The average consumer has been hit hard by the effects of the Covid19 virus. There were several relief options offered by the enactment of the Cares Act. With the pandemic still looming and heavily affecting so many across this country, certain extensions have been made to provide some additional relief to homeowners, renters, small businesses and federal student loan borrowers.
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA), the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), which regulates Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, have extended their deadlines for homeowners to request a CARES Act forbearance.
The extended deadline to request a forbearance from your mortgage servicer for FHA-insured loans (including reverse mortgages), VA loans, USDA loans, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac government-backed loans is June 30, 2021. USDA is also offering a one year forbearance option to direct home loan borrowers who have been affected by Covid19.
To get more information about your mortgage rights under the federal CARES Act, consider talking to a HUD-approved housing counselor. You can find the nearest HUD-approved housing counseling agency by visiting www.hud.gov. A HUD-approved housing counselor can provide you with helpful information (at no cost) about different ways to deal with your mortgage debt and avoid a foreclosure.
For the student loan borrower some additional extensions have been granted also. The new extension date for forbearance is now September 30, 2021. If your student loans are federal then the U.S. Department of Education has automatically placed your loans into what’s called “administrative forbearance.”
You may be asking, what does this mean for me. It means that you can stop making payments on those loans from now until September 30, 2021 without being penalized. If you decide to keep making payments on your qualifying federal student loans through September 30th, the interest rate is now zero percent. That means any payments you make during the forbearance period may help you pay off your student debt faster.
If you’re on an income-based repayment program or participating in a forgiveness program, you should visit the Federal Student Aid’s Coronavirus page to get additional detailed information. If your federal student loans are in default, the U.S. Department of Education has stopped making collection calls, sending letters or billing statements through the end of September 2021.
There is also some relief for renters as well. On January 20, 2021, President Biden signed an executive order mandating that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) extend the current eviction moratorium until at least March 31, 2021.
In addition to the extensions mentioned above, the U.S. Small Business Administration has announced that the deadline to apply for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program for the COVID-19 Pandemic disaster declaration is extended to Dec. 31, 2021.
As you can see, there have been several extensions granted to the original Cares Act relief package. A HUD certified housing counselor strives to provide the most up-to-date information to the consumer. If you have any questions or just want additional details about the information please contact me at Charlestien.firstname.lastname@example.org or at 662-624-5776. You can also visit https://southernpartners.org/housing-counseling/ or www.southernpartners.org/learning-center for additional financial topics of interest. Until next week, stay financially fit!