Covid mortgage bailout is expiring. Here's what to do if you still can't pay

courtneyk | E+ | Getty Images

Covid relief programs allowed millions of struggling Americans to pause mortgage payments, and many of those bailouts are now expiring, putting cash-strapped borrowers at risk.

“The maximum forbearance term was 18 months for most programs,” said Michael Fratantoni, chief economist of the Mortgage Bankers Association. “And many borrowers are reaching that point now.”     

While many are leaving forbearance programs by tacking those postponed payments onto the end of their loan repayment schedule, borrowers must resume payment to qualify, he said.

However, if homeowners still can't make payments, they may have other options.  

More from Invest in You:
How to use Tik Tok, Instagram and other social media to launch a business
The ultimate retirement planning guide for 2021
5 tips for saving money on entertainment expenses as a college student

“You should definitely talk it over with your servicer,” said Mark McArdle, assistant director of mortgage markets at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. “They're supposed to reach out 30 days before your forbearance ends, and there's a range of options.”

Borrowers may also speak with a counselor approved by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for independent guidance, he suggested.

Loan modification  

If borrowers have income but can't afford their old payment amount, they may qualify for a loan modification, which adjusts the mortgage to lower monthly payments.

“If you expect to have difficulty making a payment, reach out to your servicer immediately,” Fratantoni said. “The sooner you get in contact with your mortgage lender, the more options you will have.”

For example, servicers may extend the loan term or reduce interest rates to lower payments, depending on the type of loan and borrower's situation.

Homeowners can learn more about post-forbearance options by loan type through the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which may prepare them for speaking with their servicer.

Sell your home

With home prices up by almost 20% compared to the previous year, borrowers with long-term job loss or a shuttered business may consider selling their property. 

Some 87% of borrowers in foreclosure have positive equity, according to RealtyTrac, a foreclosure database, meaning their property is worth more than their mortgage balance.

In many cases, sellers may offload their homes quickly due to high market demand and walk away with cash, Fratantoni said.  

“That can be a transition cushion for those who have no income and no prospects,” McArdle added. 

Homeowner Assistance Fund

If a loan modification doesn't work, borrowers may explore the Homeowner Assistance Fund, a nearly $10 billion program created by the American Rescue Plan.

The U.S. Department of Treasury is currently reviewing each state's plan, McArdle said, and programs may be running by the end of the first quarter in 2022.  

While each program is different, many will have options to help borrowers catch up on missed payments, he said, making it easier for servicers to offer solutions. 

“That will be another great tool for folks to look at,” McArdle said. “Especially for those who have exhausted everything else.” 

Borrowers can find their state's program through a map from the National Council of State Housing Agencies.

News Related

OTHER NEWS

Inflation and omicron are weighing on markets. Here's what to keep in mind

The “Charging Bull” statue at Bowling Green in New York's Financial District.Drew Angerer | Getty Images As the U.S. stock market is whipped by rising inflation and the new omicron ... Read more »

Student-loan forgiveness would mean everything to Latinx students stuck in a debt cycle

The amount of student loan debt in the United States is $1.8 trillion dollars — and counting. The price to get an education has never been more expensive. The student ... Read more »

Three ways to invest in your employees in 2022

Customer second, employees first. That is the adage of Sir Richard Branson, founder and chairman of the Virgin Group. A Gallup report says employees who are engaged are more likely ... Read more »

Never mind how Omicron blows, no shortage of economic forecasts

(NYTIMES) – The Omicron variant of the coronavirus could be dangerous enough to disrupt the lives of virtually everyone on the planet. Or it could represent a blip in a ... Read more »

Transforming Asia's food system to tackle our food and climate crises

Technology could help the agri-food sector transform by bolstering climate resiliency and sustainable food production. If you want more of what you like to eat, it’s time to think and ... Read more »

Here's what a lot of college grads don't know about their first job offer

Throughout our lives as students, we work hard to get a good education that will lead us to a solid job and fruitful career. But we aren't prepared for what ... Read more »

You need at least $1 million saved to retire in these cities

Sporrer/Rupp | Image Source | Getty Images How much do you think you'll need to save for retirement? If you're in one of these major cities, the answer will be ... Read more »

These are the five best states for drivers in 2021

Commuting doesn't have to be a bad thing. Ohio ranked as the best state for drivers in 2021, according to a study by Bankrate. The best states for drivers include ... Read more »

Smart moves to make with your retirement portfolio before the end of the year

Cravetiger | Moment | Getty Images As you make your to-do list to wrap up the year, don't forget to include checking on your retirement portfolio. There are several moves ... Read more »

Making New Year's resolutions during Covid has paid off: Fidelity survey

Uwe Krejci | Stone | Getty Images New Year's resolutions can be easy to make and even easier to break, but having a goal can help keep you upbeat and ... Read more »

Crypto is the 'top contender' for correction, money managers say

NEW YORK (BLOOMBERG) – By many counts, 2021 was the year cryptocurrencies were finally embraced by institutions. Now those same money-managers say the asset class is ripe for a big ... Read more »

Figuring out these three budget numbers will help you pay off debt and save more for retirement in 2022

The start of a new year can be a great time to revisit your budget. Your first steps should be figuring out how much money you actually have and finding ... Read more »

BlackRock, Goldman opt for China over more pricey India stocks

(Bloomberg) In a change of tone over the world’s two biggest emerging markets, global investors overseeing billions of dollars are slowly starting to favour China over India – reversing a ... Read more »

Inflation-proof gifts with your time and schmaltz

Consider the gifts of tech, travel and time, says the writer. (NYTIMES) If groceries, petrol or cars were any part of your budget this year, inflation has hit you hard. ... Read more »

Australia's $3.3 trillion pension pot reaps dividends with ESG

Australians are moving their money to reap not only benefits for society and the environment, but also their retirement savings. (BLOOMBERG) Responsible investing is paying dividends for Australia’s A$3.4 trillion ... Read more »

Investors snap up metaverse real estate in virtual land boom

A tower in Decentraland that Tokens.com hopes will generate revenue from leases and advertising. Digital realms may appear as cartoonish, gummy-coloured fantasy worlds, or digital applications of places we know. ... Read more »

Four keys that could unlock a better, more sustainable world

To reduce the world’s reliance on fossil fuels and reach net-zero emissions by 2050, global investments in clean energy must triple by the end of the decade, says the International ... Read more »

How much you'll need to invest to earn $35,000, $40,000 or $50,000 per year in interest for retirement

Living off your investment returns can help remove one of the biggest fears about life after leaving your job: Will my money outlast me? Once you decide how much you ... Read more »

Did you work from home this year? When you can claim the home-office tax deduction

Did your “Great Resignation” lead you to start a business or become your own boss this year? You may be able to write off the cost of your home office ... Read more »

This is how you can make the world a better place as you invest

With the range of investment opportunities offered by Prudential, investors can protect and grow their wealth while playing their part to leave a better world for the future. Our roles, ... Read more »

Making sense of insurance amid uncertain times

With a wide range of insurance policies available, it is vital to understand the differences before you commit. Insurance is crucial to better prepare for life’s uncertainties. Paradoxically, the wide ... Read more »

How much you can expect to get from Social Security if you make $30,000, $35,000 or $40,000 per year

The largest Social Security cost-of-living adjustment increase in decades is set to go into effect in 2022. The 5.9% pay bump was meant to help seniors cover the cost of ... Read more »

How a government shutdown would affect your Dec. 15 child tax credit payment

lisegagne | E+ | Getty Images Millions of American families with kids are set to receive the last of six advance monthly child tax credit payments Dec. 15. Yet, just ... Read more »

This millennial saved $100,000 and quit her marketing job by age 25. Here's how she did it

Having an emergency fund should be a cornerstone of household budgets. Experts commonly recommend you have at least three months of expenses in savings to handle unexpected setbacks. But how ... Read more »

The metaverse, crypto and EVs are among 2021's big tech winners

SAN FRANCISCO (BLOOMBERG) – When Americans gather around the Thanksgiving table this week, the blistering rally in technology, electric vehicles and crypto-related stocks is likely to be a part of ... Read more »

7 ways college students can help save the environment — and not go broke

The environment is one of the top concerns for Gen Z — even amid a pandemic. And, while some products that are billed as sustainable cost more, there are a ... Read more »

Fintech tools take the guesswork out of investing

The recent integration of Central Depository investment data to the SGFinDex further democratises financial planning for investors of all levels. When the pandemic hit last year, human resources executive Ms ... Read more »

If you don't get a 6% raise, are you taking a pay cut due to inflation? Here's what experts say

A worker helps a customer at the Presidente Supermarket in Miami on April 13, 2020.Joe Raedle | Getty Images Workers across the U.S. are wondering how rising inflation might be ... Read more »

Suze Orman: Can you afford to join the Great Resignation? Answer these 5 questions

Charnchai | iStock | Getty Images Working is not working out for a record number of us. According to federal data, the number of people quitting has never been higher ... Read more »

How much you need to invest per month to retire with $500,000, $750,000 or $1 million, broken down by age

Saving for retirement traditionally takes more than 40 years of work. Given that kind of time, investing a little extra cash every month can pay off exponentially in the stock ... Read more »

As inflation rises, here's where to find opportunities to make and save money

LeoPatrizi | E+ | Getty Images Rising inflation has Americans worried about purchasing power and their retirement plans. Yet there are some opportunities to make and save money in this ... Read more »

The 'Great Resignation' may help you land your dream job. What to know

Ben Hasty | MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle | Getty Images Thinking of quitting your job soon? It may help you find a better gig. Many Americans are leaving their current employers ... Read more »

Temasek offers Singapore retail investors rare opportunity to buy its bonds

SINGAPORE – Temasek Holdings launched a $350 million five-year bonds sale on Monday (Nov 15), part of which will be available for purchase by retail investors in Singapore. The state ... Read more »

Seizing Asia's investment moment in an increasingly multipolar world

To effectively position for Asia’s long-term opportunities, it is vital for business leaders and investors to understand the context and the dynamics of underlying trends in the region and how ... Read more »

TikTok Resumes and Instagram portfolios: How college students are using social media to find jobs

College students are on social media pretty much every day but when it comes to their job search, more than a third said they don't use social media at all, ... Read more »

Better to be smart than lucky

“I’d rather be lucky than be smart!” A lecturer in fund management for my Master of Science in Applied Finance course used to repeat this mantra in class. He used ... Read more »

How investors can have more say

Big index fund companies such as BlackRock, Vanguard, State Street and Fidelity are typically among the largest shareholders of publicly traded companies. Yet their ultimate owners – the millions of ... Read more »

Risk of having too much cash on flights in US

Travellers wait to drop their baggage at Miami International Airport in September 2021. (NYTIMES) – Odd-job worker Kermit Warren had about US$30,000 (S$40,600) cash on him when he flew from ... Read more »

Tips to avoid online shopping scams

A steady rise in online card fraud in recent years accelerated during the pandemic as more people shopped on the Internet. (NYTIMES) – You are expected to do much of ... Read more »

The money woes in Squid Game are real

In the hit TV series Squid Game, as in real life in South Korea, discrimination against women, the elderly and migrant workers is deeply entrenched, and many younger people find ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic