By Bob Katzen

A bill before the Financial Services Committee would allow borrowers who are struggling to pay their mortgages due to the COVID-19 crisis to defer the payments for up to six months. Following the six months, the bank would be required to work with the borrower to maintain the original payment or to agree to a loan modification reducing the monthly payments.

The payments would still have to paid at the end of the term of the loan. The measure also prohibits banks from reporting these deferred payments as late payments on the borrower’s credit report and prevents the bank from foreclosing on the property until 90 days after the pandemic emergency declaration is rescinded by Gov. Baker.

“These are unprecedented times, and therefore we must take unprecedented actions,” said Sen. Michael Moore (D-Millbury), the sponsor of the proposal. “Many people have been and will be financially impacted by the coronavirus outbreak. We must protect these people, so they can keep their homes, and not have to worry about losing the roof over their heads so that they may stay safe during this public health crisis.”

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