Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Executive Orders and the Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act enacted foreclosure moratoriums for property owners during the pandemic. The Governor’s most recent Executive Order now covers commercial properties only. Two laws signed June 17th, 2020 affords qualified mortgagors in NYS the ability to apply for residential mortgage forbearance with NYS regulated financial institutions. The CARES Act covers properties with federally backed loans and made forbearance relief available to owners of these properties.
NYS Foreclosure Moratorium
Since the beginning of the pandemic, Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed Executive Orders affording residential and commercial properties protections against foreclosure. However, in Executive Order 202.48 residential properties were removed from extensions included in executive orders and may be protected against foreclosure due to mortgage forbearance laws that were signed June 17th, 2020. For more information on the mortgage forbearance laws, see below, Homeowners, Mortgage Relief, Non-Federally Backed Mortgages In NYS.signed July 6th, 2020 modified this moratorium extension.
- This latest extension ONLY applies to commercial properties with owners who are eligible for:
- Unemployment Insurance or
- Benefits under state or federal law or
- Otherwise facing a financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Federal Foreclosure Moratorium
Properties with mortgages owned by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, US Department of Veterans Affairs, US Department of Agriculture, US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) or secured by FHA-insured Single-Family mortgages are subject to a moratorium on foreclosure until at least December 31st, 2020.
For more information, go to:
- Federal Housing Finance Agency August 27, 2020 News Release
- US Department of Veterans Affairs August 24, 2020 Circular
- US Department of Agriculture August 31, 2020 News Release
- US Department of Housing and Urban Development August 27, 2020 Mortgagee Letter
To find out the type of loan an individual has, visit official US Program,
If an individual’s loans is not covered by the foreclosure moratoriums, access foreclosure prevention assistance at https://cnycn.org/covid-19-outbreak-homeowner-resources.
FEDERALLY BACKED MORTGAGES
Under the CARES Act, owners with federally backed mortgages have the right to request forbearance. Federal agencies that offer federally backed mortgages include:
- US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
- US Department of Agriculture (USDA)
- Federal Housing Administration (FHA)
- US Department of Veterans Affair (VA)
- Fannie Mae
- Freddie Mac
Forbearance can mean a lower payment amount or pausing payments altogether for up to 180 days, with the option of an extension for another 180 days. The mortgage payment will still be owed, but the servicer cannot charge additional fees, penalties or additional interest during the forbearance period.
Homeowners should contact their loan servicer if they are experiencing a financial hardship due to the pandemic. They would not need to submit additional documentation to qualify.
To find out the type of loan an individual has, visit: https://www.makinghomeaffordable.gov/get-answers/Pages/get-answers-find-out-mortgage.aspx or https://www.mers-servicerid.org/sis.
For more information, click here.
NON-FEDERALLY BACKED MORTGAGES IN NYS
On June 17th, 2020, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed two bills into law (S08243 and S08428) affording qualified mortgagors in NYS the ability to apply for residential mortgage forbearance with NYS regulated financial institutions. For mortgage payments due between March 7th and until all COVID-related restrictions on nonessential gatherings and businesses are lifted in the mortgagors’ county, the forbearance options potentially available are:
- Extension of the term of the loan for the length of the forbearance period; or,
- Accumulation of the mortgage arrears during the forbearance period and payable monthly for the duration of the loan; or,
- Deferral of arrears during the forbearance period and payable as a one-time payment at the end of the loan; or,
- Negotiation of a loan modification or any other option to meet the needs of the mortgagor.
The forbearance period can last 180 days, with an extension of an additional 180 days. Additionally, the institution cannot charge additional fees, penalties or additional interest during the forbearance period.
Prior to the laws, Governor Cuomo signed Executive Order 202.9 and the New York State Department of Financial Services issued an emergency regulation requiring that NYS regulated financial institutions provide residential mortgage forbearance on property located in New York for a period of 90 days to any individual residing in New York who demonstrates financial hardship resulting from COVID-19. If a qualified mortgagor used the 90 days as allowed in these regulations, S08428 indicates that the 90 days are part of the 180 days allowed, and the mortgagor can also request the 180 days extension.
Homeowners in NYS without federally backed mortgages should contact their loan servicer for any available forbearance options.
NYC Property Taxes
NYC property taxes are still due to the NYC Department of Finance (DOF).
DOF offers several programs to assist property owners who face hardships making their property tax payments. These include exemption programs to lower the amount of taxes owed, standard payment plan options as well as the new Property Tax and Interest Deferral (PT AID) program, for those who qualify.
For more information about other housing resources visit: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/finance/benefits/benefits.page.