State to Suspend Mortgage Payments for 90 Days for New Yorkers Out of Work


New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that, in response to the novel coronavirus outbreak, the state will suspend mortgage payments for at least 90 days for New Yorkers out of work or working part-time. 

Cuomo said in a news conference today that the suspension of the mortgage payments will be based on “financial hardship.” Spokespeople for Cuomo’s office did not respond to a request for more details about who qualifies for the suspension and how to apply.

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The suspensions will not impact an individuals’ credit score nor will they lead to any penalties from banks, Cuomo said. 

“People are under tremendous economic pressure,” he said. “Making a mortgage payment can be one of the number one stressors. Eliminating that stressor for 90 days, I think, will go a long way.”

Cuomo clarified that the move will not exempt residents from mortgage payments but “adjusting the mortgage to include those payments on the back-end.” After the 90-day period is up, the state will “reassess as the situation goes on if that should be extended or not,” Cuomo said.

The governor also said the state will void overdraft fees for ATMs and credit cards during this time period. 

The suspension of mortgage payments comes days after the state implemented an indefinite moratorium on evictions and foreclosures around the state after the New York State Office of Court Administration halted all nonessential court functions because of the COVID-19 pandemic, as Commercial Observer previously reported. Cuomo added today the state is “postponing or suspending any foreclosures” during this period of time.

States and cities around the country have implemented similar moratoriums as the COVID-19 epidemic has put thousands of out of work. Earlier this week, California placed a moratorium on evictions until at least May 31. 

To help limit the spread of the disease, New York City ordered all bars and restaurants to switch to delivery or to-go models starting this past Tuesday, leading many restaurant companies to layoff workers. Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group announced it laid off 2,000 employees yesterday, the New York Times reported.

As of today, New York State has 4,152 cases of COVID-19, with 2,469 of those patients in New York City, up from 2,382 cases on Wednesday, according to Cuomo. The jump in confirmed cases is due to the fact that the state has ramped up testing for the virus in recent days, Cuomo said.