Presidential Proclamation Could Help Troubled HECM Borrowers

Presidential Proclamation Could Help Troubled HECM Borrowers

President Joe Biden issued a proclamation extending the COVID-19 national emergency. It will now expire one year from February 18, 2022 unless otherwise terminated before that date.

The presidentially-declared national emergency that was first declared on March 13, 2020, and extended at various times over the past two years, was set to expire on March 1, 2022.

However, the White House noted in this most recent proclamation that “the COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause significant risk to the public health and safety of the Nation. For this reason, the national emergency declared on March 13, 2020, and beginning March 1, 2020, must continue in effect beyond March 1, 2022.”

This most recent action will allow reverse mortgage borrowers who continue to be economically impacted by the pandemic to contact their servicer and request a further extension from having their loans called due and payable.

In a joint statement, Gail Balettie, SVP, Client Satisfaction at Celink, and Leslie Flynne, Director, PHH Mortgage Services, said: “The guidance that HUD provided via ML 2021-24, coupled with this continuation of the Presidentially Declared National Emergency, continues to allow HECM servicers to assist senior reverse mortgage borrowers who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Servicers have been working closely with state administrators of Treasury’s Homeowner Assistance Fund (HAF) program. We anxiously await the opening of application portals for all states so that our impacted seniors have the opportunity to apply for HAF funds. Reverse mortgage servicers are committed to working with our senior borrowers to avoid foreclosures.”