Program helps homeowners defer mortgage payments up to 12 months to help life stabilize
NASHVILLE – Affordable Housing Resources, Inc. (AHR) has created a program to help Middle Tennessee homeowners struggling to pay their mortgage after their homes were damaged by a tornado. The Tornado Mortgage Mitigation Program (TMM) is a free, no strings attached, non-profit service designed to help those homeowners effected from the March 3 tornado in Wilson, Putnam and Davidson counties.
“We’re offering a vital free service to those whose homes were rendered unlivable by the tornado,” said Eddie Latimer, CEO of AHR. “Legal work for this type of mitigation can typically cost $2,000 or more. We’re able to make it a free service to those who need it because of generous grants from Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, the Frist Foundation and NeighborWorks America.”
At no cost, TMM is helping these homeowners get up to a 12-month “holiday” from their mortgage payments. These mortgage relief guidelines are issued by the Mortgage Servicers Natural Disaster Policy. They are different than the varied mortgage relief programs that are in place for individuals and families needing deferment caused by COVID-19 and come under the CARE Act. Those guidelines only offer a 90-day deferment with a possible 90-day extension and require all skipped payments to be paid in full after the 90 or 180 days. This will not give the homeowners who lost their home in the tornado enough time to get the repairs needed and gives insurmountable hardship and stress for much of our workforce.
Under the Natural Disaster Policy, tornado victims will need a 12-months deferment, which gives them time to obtain their FEMA and insurance settlements, to find a contractor and to get the repairs on their home completed. Deferred payments are added to the end of the payment period, rather after the 12-months, giving less strain and headache to the individual.
“Most citizens do not often deal with mortgage servicers and financial institutions, so this process is often challenging and stressful to deal with and navigate. Adding a violent tornado and deadly pandemic to the mix makes things even more difficult and muddy,” said Latimer. “We’re happy to give some clarity and take away some burden to those affected most.”
AHR is well experienced in mitigating mortgages after working with thousands of homes facing foreclosure during the 2010-2014 Recession. With an extended understanding of how to successfully negotiate with the various professional mortgage servicers to get the best deal for the displaced homeowner, AHR developed TMM with the help of Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, the Frist Foundation and NeighborWorks America to help our friends and neighbors.
For more information on this free service, visit: https://ahrhousing.org/tornado-recovery-tips-assistance-from-ahr/