HUD providing foreclosure protection for Md. storm victims

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced Monday that it is instituting a 90-day foreclosure moratorium on Federal Housing Administration-insured mortgages in Maryland areas hard hit by Hurricane Sandy.

As part of President Obama’s disaster declaration last week, the housing department is implementing foreclosure relief and other assistance for homeowners and low-income renters in 18 Maryland jurisdictions.

“Families who may have been forced from their homes need to know that help is available to begin the rebuilding process,” HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan said in a statement. “Whether it’s foreclosure relief for families with FHA-insured loans or helping these counties to recover, HUD stands ready to help in any way we can.”

In addition to the three-month moratorium on federally insured foreclosures and forbearance on those foreclosures, HUD is offering the following federal disaster-relief aid:

  • Federal Housing Administration mortgage insurance for “disaster victims who have lost their homes and are facing the daunting task of rebuilding or buying another home,” said HUD’s statement. The insurance is intended to “protect lenders against the risk of default on mortgages to qualified disaster victims,” according to HUD. This insurance can be used for either the purchase or refinancing of a home.
  • Loan insurance through the Federal Housing Administration for rehabilitating a storm-damaged home. The cost of the rehab must be at least $5,000.
  • Federally guaranteed loans for state and local governments “for housing rehabilitation, economic development and repair of public infrastructure,” HUD said.

Plus, HUD is allowing Maryland officials to redirect money from existing federal resources, the Community Development Block Grant and HOME Investment Partnerships Program, toward disaster relief, if necessary.

“HUD is currently contacting State and local officials to explore streamlining the Department's CDBG and HOME programs in order to expedite the repair and replacement of damaged housing,” the department’s statement said.

HUD’s post-Sandy relief and assistance applies to people living in Baltimore and the following Maryland counties: Allegany, Calvert, Caroline, Charles, Dorchester, Frederick, Garrett, Harford, Howard, Kent, Queen Anne’s, Somerset, St. Mary’s, Talbot, Washington, Wicomico and Worcester.

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