NEW YORK -- The Federal National Mortgage Association and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. said they were providing relief to home lenders in hurricane-ravaged Florida and Louisiana.

The secondary mortgage agencies said lenders could suspend homeowners' debt payments for as long as three months, reduce payments for 18 months or longer, or lengthen loan-payback terms, all on a case-by-case basis.

Investors Not Affected

Holders of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage securities will be paid as usual during the relief period, and the agencies said they would buy loans on damaged homes.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac said debt relief provisions were applicable in federally designated disaster areas or in other areas approved by the agencies.

Mortgage lenders can determine relief by considering uninsured losses, extended unemployment, and any extraordinary expenses that affect mortgage payment.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.