Forbearance for multi-family property owners is extended
Multi-family landlords, who have been sweating the end of the impending forbearance (delayed payment) period resulting from the pandemic economy, have been extended some relief for the next few months after learning that the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has extended their options through the end of September.
According to HousingWire’s Georgia Kromrei, the regulator also extended protections for tenants that property owners must adhere to access forbearance. She notes that FHFA director Mark Calabria drew attention to the uneven pandemic recovery in a prepared statement. Job losses in the service industry sector severely impacted renters, while those who have maintained their jobs remotely have fared much better.
Says Calabria: “While Covid-19 cases are declining and many homeowners continue to emerge from forbearance, many renters, who are unable to benefit from rising home prices, have not financially recovered from the pandemic.” All the while, homebuyers who were able to snag homes in more affordable areas during the pandemic have lowered their housing costs even further, a recent Redfin study found.
In order for multi-family property owners to receive this reprieve, the federal forbearance options include requiring property owners to notify their tenants while their debt payments are on hold. “During forbearance, property owners can’t evict tenants solely for non-payment of rent,” says Kromrei. “Landlords also can’t charge late fees or penalties for non-payment of rent. They must also give tenants flexibility to repay the rent over time, not necessarily in a lump sum. If property owners do evict, they must give tenants at least a month’s notice to leave.”
The 11 million+ Americans who are behind on their rent include a disproportionate number of minorities, leaving them at a higher risk for evictions, according to data from the Private Equity Stakeholder Project. “Tenants, who are often in the dark about the financing of the building where they rent, can use the respective GSE (Government Sponsored Enterprise) property online tools to determine whether their building is federally backed.
Source: RHousingWire | TBWS
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