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updated: 11/9/2012 10:57 AM

Fannie, Freddie expand aid to storm-hit homeowners

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Associated Press

MCLEAN, Va. -- Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are expanding their assistance to borrowers whose homes were damaged or destroyed by Superstorm Sandy.

The mortgage organizations said Friday that they will automatically suspend evictions and foreclosures in disaster areas for 90 days.

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They also gave servicers more flexibility and independence to suspend payments, provide loan modifications or waive late payment charges for homeowners in these areas.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac also said they would expedite the distribution of insurance payments on storm claims to help speed up repairs.

Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae buy home loans from banks and other lenders, package them into bonds and then sell them to investors around the world. They own or guarantee about half of all U.S. mortgages.

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