The Montana Housing customer service window is currently closed to public visitors to protect against the spread of COVID-19. Montana Housing borrowers needing to make a mortgage payment can do so online, by phone, ACH or sending it by mail. Montana Housing will waive phone and online payment fees through the month of May (May 31).
CARES Act Consumer Right to Request Forbearance
- On March 27, 2020, congress passed, and President Trump signed into law, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”). Under the CARES Act, Montana Housing homeowners with a Federally backed mortgage loan experiencing a financial hardship due, directly or indirectly, to the COVID–19 emergency may request forbearance on their Federally backed mortgage loan, regardless of delinquency status. Please review our Montana Housing COVID-19 Response letter for details.
- To request a forbearance, Montana Housing borrowers must submit a completed Montana Housing COVID-19 Forbearance Acknowledgement form. Upon receipt of the completed form, Montana Housing Loan Servicing Specialists will contact the borrower to discuss next steps. It is critical that borrowers keep in contact with us during this time so we can identify the best option available to each borrower, based on individual circumstances.
- Montana Housing must follow the guidelines set forth by the insurer/guarantor (FHA, VA, RD, HUD 184) of your loan. These guidelines allow Montana Housing to offer loan modifications, payment plans, and forbearance but do not allow us to defer payments. Montana Housing, as a loan servicer of federally insured mortgages, applauds the passage of the federal CARES Act to provide relief for our homeowners.
Consumer Finance Protection Agency Guide to coronavirus mortgage relief options
The following guidance only applies to borrowers with Federal Housing Administration (FHA) insured loans:
On March 18, 2020, FHA announced a foreclosure and eviction moratorium for all FHA-insured Single Family mortgages for a period of 60 days. Per FHA’s notice: “Properties secured by FHA-insured Single Family mortgages are subject to a moratorium on foreclosure for a period of 60 days. The moratorium applies to the initiation of foreclosures and to the completion of foreclosures in process. Similarly, evictions of persons from properties secured by FHA-insured Single Family mortgages are also suspended for a period of 60 days. In addition, deadlines of the first legal action and reasonable diligence timelines are extended by 60 days.”
The Federal Housing Administration also released COVID-19 Questions and Answers on March 18, 2020. The FHA Q&A below is applicable only to borrowers with FHA-insured loans:
Q. Are there special loss mitigation program options available to borrowers who may be negatively impacted by the Coronavirus?
A. As with any other event that negatively impacts a borrower’s ability to pay their monthly mortgage payment, FHA’s suite of loss mitigation options provides solutions that mortgagees should offer to distressed borrowers – including those that could be impacted by the Coronavirus – to help prevent them from going into foreclosure. An example of one of these options is our Special Forbearance for unemployed borrowers. The SFB-Unemployment Option is a Home Retention Option available when one or more of the Borrowers has become unemployed and this loss of employment has negatively affected the Borrower’s ability to continue to make their monthly Mortgage Payment. These home retention options are located in FHA’s Single Family Housing Policy Handbook 4000.1 (SF Handbook) Section III.A.2. See FHA INFO 20-18 for more details. FHA is closely monitoring the situation and will provide updated guidance, as needed.
Federal Housing Administration COVID-19 Questions and Answers
Foreclosure and eviction moratorium for all FHA-insured Single Family
The following applies to USDA guaranteed loans:
Effective March 19, 2020, borrowers with USDA guaranteed loans are subject to a moratorium on foreclosure for a period of 60 days. The moratorium applies to the initiation of foreclosures and to the completion of foreclosures in process.
Similarly, evictions of persons from properties secured by USDA guaranteed loans are also suspended for a period of 60 days.
In addition, deadlines of the first legal action and reasonable diligence timelines are extended by 60 days.