COVID-19 has shaken up most people’s lives and plans in a way many have never experienced before. If you were planning on selling, buying, or refinancing a home before COVID-19, you don’t need to put off your plans. NFM Lending is continuously adapting to market and industry changes to best serve you and your family. Read on to find out how NFM Lending can serve clients virtually.
NFM Lending’s ongoing initiative to reduce paper usage has moved us toward a virtual experience, for those who want one, even prior to the pandemic. Almost every step of the mortgage application process can be done electronically, making the process more efficient for everyone involved. Loan applications can be completed online, as can the list of documents needed to move the loan forward. All documents can also be submitted safely through our Secure Document Upload (SDU) at your convenience using the device of your choice. For forms that require a signature, you have the option to review and sign them electronically. Though final closing documents need to be signed in front of a notary, we will let you know prior to closing so you can make arrangements with a notary and your title company.
Regardless of environmental conditions, going through the mortgage or refinance process can be a daunting experience if you’re not fully informed. We have the ability to provide real-time electronic updates so you’re never in the dark about your loan. If you ever have questions about what’s going on, our loan originators and operations professionals are dedicated to answering questions and guiding you through the process. Whether you need a phone call, email, a quick text, or even a video call, NFM is here for you. Our staff is working remotely during this time, but still fully available to assist. We remain committed to ensuring you have an experience that’s as smooth as possible.
Even though there have been changes to the way we all normally do things, our mission to provide excellent service remains the same. The processes to purchase, sell, and refinance a home now may be a bit different, but they are still very doable. The technology available today will help minimize the challenges we’re facing during this pandemic. Together we will improvise, adapt, and overcome.
The federal government recently passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) to assist Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic. The new law includes provisions for homeowners, one of which requires loan servicers to offer mortgage forbearance. There are several misconceptions about this relief service. If you’re considering this option for yourself and your family, this is what you need to know about mortgage forbearance.
First and foremost, mortgage forbearance is NOT mortgage forgiveness. Forbearance means that your loan payments will be deferred for a certain period of time, after which you will be responsible for those payments. According to the CARES Act, your loan will accrue interest during forbearance, but it will not be subject to additional interest or fees. Some loan servicers may request multiple months’ worth of payments at the end of forbearance, so you need to contact your lender to understand their repayment terms. The CARES Act stipulates an initial forbearance period for federally backed loans of 180 days, with an extension of 180 days if requested by the borrower. Forbearance is essentially a grace period where your payments will not be due monthly in order to provide immediate relief.
The government’s forbearance program covers mortgages backed by federally sponsored agencies: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Your loan servicer may have their own forbearance options if you did not get your mortgage through a federal program. If you’re interested in mortgage forbearance, you need to contact your loan servicer to see if you qualify and what their terms of repayment are. Call the number located on your monthly mortgage statements to reach your servicer.
As mentioned in the CARES Act, your credit score should not be affected during forbearance, nor will you be charged any late fees. However, there is uncertainty around this topic and we’ll update this page as we get more information. One thing to be aware of is that your account will maintain the status it was in when it went into forbearance (i.e. current, delinquent, etc.) while in forbearance. If possible, be sure your account is current before going into forbearance. If you anticipate you will need more time in forbearance, reach out to your loan servicer before your initial term ends to ask what options are available. Understand that if you’re still able to make monthly mortgage payments, you should continue to make them.
This is a very uncertain and even stressful time for many homeowners, therefore it’s even more important to do your research before you sign up for any relief program. Make sure you have a thorough understanding of your loan servicer’s conditions so you won’t encounter any unpleasant surprises down the road.
If you decide forbearance isn’t for you, explore the idea of refinancing.