As COVID-19 continues, two joint letters from the CFPB and Department of Justice on Monday reminded landlords and mortgage servicers that they must adhere to the CARES Act and additional legal requirements under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act.
The CFPB and DOJ letters reiterated that landlords and mortgage servicers must ensure that military homeowners and tenants are safeguarded during the pandemic and benefit equally from the economic recovery.
One letter was sent to landlords and other housing providers regarding protections for military tenants, while a second letter was sent to mortgage servicers regarding military borrowers who have already exited or will be exiting COVID-19 mortgage forbearance programs in the coming weeks and months.
The letter to mortgage servicers comes in response to complaints from military families and veterans on a range of potential mortgage servicing violations, including inaccurate credit reporting, misleading communications to borrowers and required lump-sum payments for reinstating their mortgage loans, according to the CFPB. The complaints are being reviewed for compliance by the bureau with the CARES Act and other applicable requirements.
During the pandemic, roughly 7.6 million homeowners entered forbearance, according to the CFPB. While the majority have resumed their regular mortgage payments, approximately 1.25 million borrowers — many of whom are military borrowers — remain in forbearance programs that will expire at the end of the year.