RHAC is here to support homeowners and renters during this crisis!

RHAC counselors are available to help during the COVID-19 crisis. You can live chat with a counselor or fill out the contact form and someone will get back to you right away.

The COVID-19 Rental Assistance Program has closed.  Any applications received after 9/10/2020 will be placed on a waiting list.



New York State regulations:

New York – Foreclosure & Evictions Moratorium

On 3/20/20, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a 90-day moratorium on foreclosure and evictions for residential and commercial tenants, meaning no one can be foreclosed on or evicted in New York until at least 6/20/20.
*Please note, the NYS 90 day moratorium overrides the federal 60 day morartorium.
Here is a link to the announcement

On 3/24/20, the NYS Department of Financial Services issued an emergency regulation requiring that, during a specified time, New York State regulated financial institutions provide residential mortgage forbearance on property located in New York for a period of 90 days to any individual residing in New York who demonstrates financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, subject to the safety and soundness requirements of the regulated institutions. This emergency regulation was adopted pursuant to Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 202.9. This regulation is not applicable to Federally-backed mortgages, please see Federal program listed below.

• It is important to note that under this regulation documentation of a financial hardship (e.g., layoffs, salary reduction due to covid19) is required for forbearances or other workouts.

Federal regulations:

CARES Act Relief from Foreclosure: CARES Act § 4022 provides foreclosure relief for “federally-backed loans,” which means loans (for 1–4 family properties) purchased, securitized, owned, insured, or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, or owned, insured, or guaranteed by FHA, VA, or USDA.

Under the CARES Act, a servicer of federally backed mortgage loan may not:
• initiate any judicial or nonjudicial foreclosure process
• move for a foreclosure judgment, order a sale, or execute a foreclosure-related eviction or foreclosure sale.

Under the CARES Act, homeowners with federally backed mortgage loans affected who are experiencing a financial hardship due, directly or indirectly, to the COVID–19 emergency may request forbearance on the Federally backed mortgage loan, regardless of delinquency status, by:
• submitting a request to the borrower’s servicer; and
• affirming that the borrower is experiencing a financial hardship during the COVID– 19 emergency.

Upon a request by a borrower for forbearance, such forbearance shall be granted for up to 180 days, and shall be extended for an additional period of up to 180 days at the request of the borrower, provided that, at the borrower’s request, either the initial or extended period of forbearance may be shortened.

During a period of forbearance described in this subsection, no fees, penalties, or interest beyond the amounts scheduled or calculated as if the borrower made all contractual payments on time and in full under the terms of the mortgage contract, shall accrue on the borrower’s account.”

To determine if you have a federally backed mortgage please visit:
Fannie Mae – look up your loan
Freddie Mac – look up your loan
FHA – look for an FHA case number on the mortgage document, specific language in the mortgage and note forms, or through the payment of an FHA premium on the mortgage statement. In some cases, unfortunately, loans may have been stripped of their FHA-insured status; call HUD’s National Servicing Center at 877-622-8525 if there are questions.
VA – specific language in the note and mortgage identifying it as a VA loan, and there are fees paid to the VA noted in closing documents.

Frequent questions from homeowners:

Should I pay my mortgage?
The simple answer is yes, if you are able, you should continue to pay your mortgage. The programs that are coming out, waiving or deferring mortgage payments will be based on you being impacted by COVID-19. You will have to provide documentation that your income has been affected by the virus/shutdown and with many lenders you may not qualify for COVID-19 programs if you are already behind.

What does waiving or deferring payments mean? Do I not owe those payments?
Waiving payments does not mean you do not owe them. There are 2 ways that lenders are waiving payments – forbearance and deferral.

Forbearance – most lenders are offering forbearance plans. During a forbearance your lender will allow you to not make payments, you will not incur late fees and will not be reported as late to the credit bureau. However, those payments will become due once the forbearance period ends. Many lenders will work with you at the end of the forbearance, most likely in the form of a loan modification.

Deferral – some lenders are allowing a “payment deferral” option that will allow borrowers facing a hardship to defer two months of their mortgage payments until the end of their mortgage. In simpler terms, they will allow certain borrowers to defer two months of their mortgage payments until their mortgage ends or they sell their house.
RHAC housing counselors can assist in working with your lender to determine if you qualify for any of the programs.
Please see our foreclosure prevention page for more information and specific programs