Owning a home is a goal for many of us. But what do we do when we face unexpected challenges and that goal is derailed?

As the pandemic continues to challenge household finances, the recent extension of eviction and foreclosure moratoriums on Federally or Government Sponsored Enterprise backed mortgages (FHA, VA, USDA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) gives homeowners temporary relief through March 31, 2021.

With that temporary pause, now is a good time to understand what options are available to you.

Know that you’re not alone. There are resources available for both renters and homeowners. You just need to know how to access them to get the help you need.

CNN recently reported, “being able to afford a new home is getting further out of reach for those looking to buy in the low-and middle-tiers of the market.”

Everyone understands the reality, but what can you do to protect your financial future? There is hope.

In November, an independent coalition of U.S. housing finance organizations launched the ‘Not Ok? That’s Ok’ campaign to raise awareness among consumers who have missed one or more mortgage payments in 2020 and may be eligible for forbearance assistance under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The goal is to help customers know what tools are available to them to make it through this time financially intact, with a roof over their heads.

Are you one of the many homeowners wanting to understand the temporary relief programs? The first step is to get correct information, and make the best informed decisions for you and your family, with the help of a trusted advisor.

995Hope offers resources, and help

As a ‘Not Ok? That’s Ok’ campaign member, 995hope.com offers free counseling to families and individuals trying to make sense of home financing, foreclosure prevention, and rental counseling options. Housing and Urban Development (HUD)-certified counselors can help you understand your options, and make solid decisions regarding your home.

Whether your financial challenges mean you are falling behind on monthly mortgage or rental payments, just remember You Are Not Alone.

If you have taken advantage of CARES Act temporary forbearance, or other rental protections during COVID, it is important to stay up-to-date and face any issues early.

There is good news:

  • Many homeowners now have more time to seek forbearance and avoid foreclosure, as deadlines have been extended into 2021.
  • The CARES Act protections are still available to homeowners with mortgages backed by federal government agencies or the government sponsored agencies, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

995Hope counselors can discuss how to:

  • obtain foreclosure prevention resources
  • learn about other housing resources
  • avoid eviction, if you can’t pay your rent
  • get help with rent and utility costs
  • understand new guidelines and deadlines

Reach out and get the help you need

During challenging times, it is easy to isolate yourself and resist taking positive actions. Even if your current situation means you are struggling to make a rent or loan payment, be proactive.

Many payment relief programs exist for almost all loan types. If you have been impacted by COVID-19, your mortgage company has tools to help you — and consistent with the CARES Act, most of the programs provide streamlined access.

If you are not comfortable calling your mortgage company, but want support, a HUD-certified housing counselor is just a call away via 995Hope.

995Hope counselors will begin by learning about your current housing situation. Then, they will guide you through a process to better understand your financial picture and create an action plan to address your specific goals.

Remember, regardless of your situation, you are not alone. We can help put you on track to being ‘OK,’ even if you don’t feel like it right now.

If you are interested in learning more, or you would like to speak with a 995Hope counselor, please give us a call. We are here to help.