Florida Foreclosures and Evictions During the COVID-19 Crisis
Between 2010 and the first quarter of 2020, the US economy has seen steady growth quarter on quarter. Up until the current COVID-19 crisis and its devastating economic impact, we had been experiencing the longest period of economic prosperity in US history with few foreclosures and evictions.
That has now changed, with March 2020 new unemployment claims spiking 3000% and everyday Floridians worrying about making mortgage and rent payments in April and May. Thankfully, the Florida Governor has followed the lead of the Federal Government in issuing an executive order to protect the homes and tenancies of Florida residents.
Here is a review of what these orders mean for individual mortgage holders and renters in Florida.
Federal Executive Orders
The US President has declared that the Department of Housing and Urban Development authorized and the Federal Housing Finance Agency directed a moratorium of 60 days in which no foreclosure and eviction proceedings will take place for the following mortgage loan types
- FHA loans
- Fannie Mae loans
- Freddie Mac loans
- Enterprise-backed loans
Together these loan types cover the vast majority of mortgage loans currently being paid by Floridians. The 60-day range began on March 18th and ends May 18th with the possibility of an extension.
Florida Executive Order on Foreclosures
On April 2nd Governor DeSantis of Florida made an executive order postponing all mortgage-payment-related home foreclosures in the state for 45 days. The 45 day range began on April 2nd and ends on May 16th with the possibility of an extension.
“…the Florida Governor has followed the lead of the Federal Government in issuing an executive order to protect the homes and tenancies of Florida residents.”
Florida Executive Order on Evictions
Governor DeSantis’ executive order includes the postponement of rental-payment-related eviction proceedings during the same 45 day range. Note that this state-wide moratorium on mortgage payments does not in any way apply to evictions and home repossessions that are not the result of difficulties to make payments. Furthermore, the executive order in no way removes the obligation of those with mortgages and tenants to make their periodic payments.
County-level announcements such as the joint announcement by Florida’s 17th Circuit Court and Broward Sheriff’s Office are being issued statewide in many counties. This shows that the local mechanism for evictions is also being suspended as a result of the crisis.
Are you struggling to pay your mortgage or make rental payments due to the COVID-19 crisis? Does it look like you may miss payments this month or next month and fall behind? Know that having an experienced real estate lawyer by your side can help you more effectively negotiate a settlement with your lender or landlord. Act now to make sure that you are not making the error of waiting until after the moratoriums expire. This will better ensure that you are in a safe position to remain in your home when the Federal, State and local moratoriums are lifted. Contact South Florida Law, PLLC today for a free foreclosure or eviction consultation. Call us on (954) 900-8885 or click here to reach out via our contact form.