MReport April 2020

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M R EP O RT | 23 90-Day Mortgage Relief Plan Enacted in New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo added payments will be waived based on financial hardship and there will be no late payment fees. N ew York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a 90-day mortgage relief plan for homeowners across the state, responding to the spread of coronavirus putting many New Yorkers out of work. "We're not exempting people from the mortgage payments, we're just adjusting the mortgage to include those payments on the backend," he said. CNN reported that these mort- gage reliefs include postponing or suspending foreclosures, as well as: • Waive mortgage payments based on financial hardship • No negative reporting to credit bureaus • Grace period for loan modifica- tion • No late payment fees or online payment fees Lance Margolin, Partner Emeritus/Counsel at The Margolin & Weinreb Law Group LLP told DS News about the situation in New York. "Virtually all government of- fices and agencies are now either closed or on reduced staffing thus affecting our ability to do our daily jobs," Margolin said. "Things we did just a few weeks ago without thinking about it are now either impossible or improbable." "I am optimistic that the chal- lenges that we are facing now will be met with the best of what we have and who we are," he added. "This unprecedented health crisis requires an unprecedented response," said Ed Delgado, President and CEO, Five Star Global. "However, it is critical that we consider both the short- and long-term implications of any relief strategies. Gov. Cuomo's proposed plan could threaten to destabilize the mortgage mar- kets. We must work to meet the needs of struggling homeowners, but must also ensure we do not undermine the very system of homeownership." Governor Cuomo's relief plan follows President Donald Trump's announcement that foreclosures and evictions for mortgages backed by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Federal Housing Finance Agency will be sus- pended. Official statements from FHFA and HUD clarified that the policy will extend at least 60 days. During an earlier press con- ference Wednesday, President Trump had said, "Today I am also announcing that the Department of Housing and Urban Development is providing immediate relief to renters and homeowners by suspending all foreclosures and evictions until the end of April. We are working very closely with Dr. Ben Carson and everybody from HUD." "Today's actions will allow households who have an FHA- insured mortgage to meet the challenges of COVID-19 without fear of losing their homes, and help steady market concerns," said HUD Secretary Dr. Benjamin Carson. "The health and safety of the American people is of the utmost importance to the Department, and the halting of all foreclosure actions and evictions for the next 60 days will provide homeowners with some peace of mind during these trying times." "This is an uncertain time for many Americans, particularly those who could experience a loss of income. As such, we want to provide FHA borrower households with some immediate relief given the current circum- stances," said Federal Housing Commissioner The Hon. Brian Montgomery. "Our actions today make it clear where the priority needs to be." COVER STORY SPECIAL REPORT: COVID-19

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