Houghtaling & Downey Urge Banks to Extend Mortgage Payments

OCEAN TOWNSHIP - Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey today called for New Jersey financial institutions to implement Governor Phil Murphy’s COVID-19 mortgage relief grace period by extending the length of borrowers’ mortgages by an additional three months, rather than requiring a single three-month lump sum payment at the conclusion of the grace period.

“This is not a situation where someone might be down on their luck in April and financially well-off in June,” said Houghtaling (D-Neptune). “With unemployment rates reaching record highs, thousands of households will be barely able to cover day-to-day expenses, let alone save money for a single massive mortgage payment. Families deserve the benefit of the doubt - not another source of stress.”

“Extending mortgage terms isn’t just the right thing to do - it’s the responsible and economically sustainable thing to do,” said Downey (D-Freehold). “Banks would gain nothing from forcing a huge fraction of their customers into bankruptcy and foreclosure in the midst of a national crisis - especially when the only thing keeping those customers from paying their loans back is a national quarantine. It’s far more profitable to practice forbearance and forgiveness now and allow borrowers to pay back what they owe when they’re able to do so.”

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