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Having Trouble Paying Your Mortgage?

At Third Federal, our goal is to help our mortgage customers become successful homeowners by putting them into a mortgage they can afford.  During these unprecedented times, we realize circumstances have changed and hardships may arise.

If you are having trouble making your mortgage payment, due to implications from the COVID-19 pandemic, we have assistance programs that may be able to help. 

To submit your request for forbearance, please login or enroll in Online Banking. In Online Banking, choose the Additional Services tab, and select Loan Forbearance Request.

For additional details, click below.


Contact Third Federal’s Mortgage Assistance Department

Please e-mail specialservicing@thirdfederal.com with questions or comments about any of our mortgage assistance programs. So we can better serve you, please include your full name and phone number in your e-mail.

Q: Does Third Federal offer any programs to assist borrowers who are having difficulty paying their mortgage?
A: Third Federal is following the mortgage forbearance guidelines as outlined in the CARES Act.

Q: Is it true that I don’t have to make any payments during this time?
A: The CARES Act, signed into law on March 27, 2020, provides a forbearance option for borrowers who have federally backed mortgage loans, including: Fannie Mae, Freddy Mac, FHA, VA loans.  Third Federal has extended CARES Act protections to loans Third Federal holds in our portfolio as well. Borrowers must contact their lender for forbearance. It is not automatic.

Q: What is a mortgage forbearance?
A: Forbearance is a suspension of mortgage payments for a limited period of time. The payments are not waived, and you are still responsible for making those payments. Forbearance is not a forgiveness of payments.

Q: How does the forbearance program work?
A: By requesting assistance for your mortgage loan:
 -You are requesting to forbear payments for up to 90 days.
 -During this period, no payment is required, and no late payment fees will be charged.
 -You may restart making full monthly payments at any time.
 -At the end of the payment forbearance period, the missed payments will be due; however, you may qualify for available options, such as an additional forbearance period, a repayment plan, or modification of your loan.

Q: What happens after I submit a request for the forbearance plan?
A: Following your request, you will receive a confirmation letter via US Mail, confirming that that we have reviewed your request. The letter will contain additional details.  There is no need to contact us in the interim. We appreciate your patience.

Q: Are there documents I need to provide?
A: No, you do not need to provide any documents to obtain the temporary financial hardship payment forbearance due to COVID-19. Please note that forbearance is not automatic, you must reach out to Third Federal to complete a forbearance application.

Q: How long will it take to process my request?
A: Because of the extraordinary events impacting our communities and the high volume of customer inquiries, it may take up to a week to receive a response. Upon completion of your request, a letter will be sent via US Mail with additional details.

Q: Will late fees be charged during the forbearance period?
A: No. Late payment fees will not be charged during the forbearance period.

Q: Will interest continue to accrue during the forbearance period?
A: Yes. Interest will continue to accrue on your account as provided in your loan documents.

Q: What if I need longer than the 90-day forbearance?
A: About one month (30 days) prior to the expiration of your forbearance, we will contact you.  If your financial situation has not been resolved, an associate from our Special Servicing team will discuss the options available based on your situation. If you are still experiencing a hardship, an additional payment forbearance may be granted.

Q: What options are available at the end of the forbearance?
A: If your financial situation has been resolved, we will work with you to get your mortgage payments back on track.

Options available include:

- Reinstate the loan:  This option will allow you to make a single, one-time lump sum payment of the deferred payments to bring your loan current. 
- Enter a repayment plan:  This option will allow you to break up your deferred payments and pay them back over a period of time by adding partial amounts to your monthly mortgage payment. 
- Loan Modification: This option will allow you to permanently change the terms of your loan to bring the account current.

There are no costs associated with any of the above options. 

Q: I have a Home Equity Line of Credit. Will I still have access to the funds if I enter a forbearance plan?
A: No.  During the forbearance plan, you will not have the ability to withdraw on your home equity line of credit.

Q: If my account is current at the time I enter a forbearance plan, will my credit report be negatively impacted?
A: Under current guidance, if you enter into forbearance, there is no negative credit effect.

Q: If my account was past due at the time I enter a forbearance plan, will my credit report be negatively impacted?
A: Under current guidance, if your account was delinquent at the time of forbearance, we will maintain reporting the pre-COVID-19 status. However during the forbearance period, there will not be additional reporting that could further negatively impact your score.

Q: What if I am no longer experiencing a hardship?
A: You may renew making full monthly payments at any time if you no longer need the payment forbearance; however, you will need to contact us to review available options for bringing the account current at the end of the forbearance period.

Q: When I entered forbearance, my automatic payments were deferred. Now that I done with forbearance, how do I start them back up?
A: At the time you entered into forbearance, your payments and ACH/automatic payments were suspended.  Once forbearance has ended and based on the type of resolution, the ACH/automatic pay plan will be reinstated.

Q: Will there be any other assistance programs available?
A: At this time, forbearance is the option available to assist homeowners who are having difficulty making their payments.

Q: When do I pay the forbearance back?
A: That will depend on your financial situation at end of the forbearance timeframe.  We will work with you to find a comfortable and affordable solution. 

Q: What will my interest rate be?
A: In most cases, your interest rate will not change; however, it may depend on your financial situation when the forbearance plan ends.

Q: Can I add the deferred payment onto the end of the loan?
A: The solution to your situation will depend on your financial situation at the end of the forbearance.  If you choose a loan modification, the deferred interest and escrow will be added to the loan balance and entire amount will be amortized over the loan term. 

Q: Is there a lot of paper work associated with a loan modification?
A: In most situations, no.  If your financial situation returns to pre COVID-19 levels, you will not be required to provide additional financial information.  However, if your financial situation has not returned to its pre COVID-19 level, a full review may be necessary in order to determine an affordable payment option.

Q: Will a repayment plan OR a modification affect my credit?
A: If you choose to participate in a repayment plan OR one of the modification options, we are required by law to report the change to the credit agencies, and it may impact your credit.

No matter what your financial situation is, even if you haven’t missed a mortgage payment but are worried you might fall behind on your Third Federal mortgage, we have options for you to consider. You may be eligible to modify your mortgage loan which will lower your payment, making it more affordable. Or, if you’ve missed payments and find yourself buried under late fees and past-due amounts, you may qualify for a temporary (or permanent) solution to help you get your finances back on track and avoid foreclosure.

Whether you want to stay in the home or not, we may be able to help.

Here’s an overview of possible solutions available. At Third Federal, a special servicing associate can work with you to determine the best option for your particular situation.

Options to Stay in Your Home

Forbearance: A plan through which you make reduced monthly payments for a short period of time. You must demonstrate a financial hardship. A forbearance gives you time to improve your financial situation and get back on your feet. Once the forbearance period is over, you will enter into a repayment plan in order to cure the delinquency. A forbearance plan due to COVID-19 will not have an impact on your credit score.To submit your request for forbearance, please login or enroll in Online Banking. In Online Banking, choose the Additional Services tab, and select Loan Forbearance Request.

Repayment Plan: An arrangement made to repay delinquent payments over an extended period of time. A repayment plan is less damaging to your credit score than a foreclosure. You will be required to pay the regular monthly payment plus an additional amount in order to cure the delinquency. A repayment plan may impact your credit.

Modification: Third Federal will modify certain terms of the loan including principal balance (to include the delinquency), interest rate, and term. The modification may reduce your monthly mortgage payments to a more affordable payment. A loan modification is less damaging to your credit score than a foreclosure. You must demonstrate a financial hardship and will be required to provide documentation. Third Federal will conduct a financial analysis to determine what terms would yield an appropriate payment while curing the delinquency. During the review process, you are required to make monthly payments on the account. Once the loan is reviewed and found eligible for a modification, Third Federal will report the account current to the credit repositories. Late charges will not accrue on the account as long as the account remains in good standing. A loan modification will help you stay in your home and avoid foreclosure. A loan modification may impact your credit.

Options to Leave Your Home

Homeowners who are struggling with their mortgage payments are facing tough choices—do you stay in a home you may no longer be able to afford or should you try to leave? While it may be difficult to think about leaving your home and making this decision, it may be the best option if other solutions to keep you in your home are no longer viable.

Don’t just walk away from your home. There are better options. The most important thing is to avoid foreclosure—and options may be available to assist you if you are ready to leave your home. Some options may even offer cash incentives to help you move and transition into different housing. Now’s the time to take action and consider the following options, before it’s too late.

Short Sale (aka Pre-foreclosure Sale): A short sale is the sale of a home for less than the balance remaining on your mortgage. If Third Federal agrees to a short sale, you can sell your home and pay off all (or a portion of) your mortgage balance with the proceeds. A Short Sale is designed to eliminate or reduce your remaining mortgage debt so you can start repairing your credit sooner than if you went through a foreclosure

Extenuating circumstances influence whether or not we will discount a loan balance in this manner. These circumstances are usually related to the current real estate market and the borrower's financial situation.

Deed-in-Lieu (Also known as a Voluntary Conveyance): With a Deed-in-Lieu of Foreclosure (DIL), you transfer the ownership of your property to Third Federal in exchange for a release from your loan and payments. This will eliminate or reduce your mortgage debt. A Deed-in-Lieu will allow you to start repairing your credit score sooner than if you went through a foreclosure. In some instances, you may be able to obtain a mortgage to purchase a home sooner than if you went through a foreclosure.

Next Steps

If you feel any of the above options may help you stay in your home, print out and complete the document below. Please include a detailed explanation of your financial hardship and indicate which of the above options you feel is best for your situation. If you have questions about how to complete the forms, please contact us at 1-866-866-7916 for more information.

Mortgage Assistance Application

After you have completed these documents, please fax them to 1-877-906-0857 or mail them to:

  • Third Federal Savings & Loan
  • Special Servicing Department
  • 7007 Broadway Ave.
  • Cleveland, Ohio 44105

Once we've received this information, we will review it and contact you to discuss your situation and your options.

If you are struggling with your mortgage payments, you may feel overwhelmed and frustrated. Many homeowners simply don’t know what to do or where to go for assistance. But there are many public resources you can use to find out more about your options.

Fannie Mae

The Fannie Mae website can help you explore your options, and includes many resources for struggling homeowners, including homeowners experiencing the financial impacts of COVID-19.
www.knowyouroptions.com

HUD

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) sponsors housing counseling agencies throughout the country and counseling is available in many languages.
www.hud.gov/offices/hsg/sfh/hcc/fc/index.cfm

Hardest Hit Funds

The Federal Government established Hardest Hit Fund Programs to provide targeted aid to families in states hit hard by the economic and housing market downturn. Third Federal is a participating Servicer for the programs established in Ohio, Kentucky and Florida.
www.treasury.gov/initiatives/financial-stability/programs/housing-programs/hhf/Pages/default.aspx

Scam artists are stealing millions of dollars from distressed homeowners by promising immediate relief from foreclosure, or demanding cash for counseling services, when HUD-approved counseling agencies provide the same services for FREE! If you receive an offer, information or advice that sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Don't let them take advantage of you, your situation, your house or your money. Remember, help is FREE.

How to Spot a Scam - beware of a company or person who:

  • Asks for a fee in advance to work with your lender to modify, refinance or reinstate your mortgage.
  • Guarantees they can stop a foreclosure or get your loan modified.
  • Advises you to stop paying your mortgage company and pay them instead.
  • Pressures you to sign over the deed to your home or sign any paperwork that you haven't had a chance to read, and you don't fully understand.
  • Claims to offer "government-approved" or "official government" loan modifications.
  • Asks you to release personal financial information online or over the phone and you have not been working with this person and/or do not know them.

How to Report a Scam - do one of the following:
Go to www.preventloanscams.org and fill out the Loan Modification Scam Prevention Network's (LMSPN) complaint form online and get more information on how to fight back. Note: you can also fill out this form and send it to the fax number/e-mail/address (your choice!) on the back of the form.