VIA NPR.ORG ( Visit for updates)

If you’re a homeowner and have lost income or your job(s) due to the coronavirus outbreak, you are getting some relief. Depending on your situation, you should be eligible to have your payments reduced or suspended for up to 12 months.

Through the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Federal regulators are ordering lenders to offer flexibility. This covers all home loans in the U.S. guaranteed by Fannie and Freddie. But it is expected that the mortgage industry at whole will  adopt a similar policy.

“That forbearance is up to 12 months, depending on their particular situation,” says Mark Calabria, director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (which oversees Fannie and Freddie). (

Homeowners can not just stop paying their mortgage. “They need to contact their servicer — that is the lender that they send the check to every month,” says Calabria. “That lender will work with them to be able to work out a payment plan. Obviously, we hope to get them back on their feet as soon as possible.” (

“You’re not going to have to send 20 pieces of paper at the front of this,” he says.  If you are affected, you can call your lender directly and testify over the phone. Documenting the hardship can come later.