Covid-19 and
Mortgage Relief

a message from waterstone mortgage regarding
covid-19 & mortgage relief

During this challenging time, those of us at Waterstone Mortgage are consistently thinking of our customers, business partners, and their family members — and hoping that everyone is staying safe and healthy. While there is a great deal of uncertainty concerning the COVID-19 outbreak, we also would like to offer a few words of reassurance when it comes to your home financing needs.

Our Commitment to You

Please find peace in your decision to work with Waterstone Mortgage during this time, as we know we will come out stronger on the other side. We gain our financial stability partly through the support of our parent company, WaterStone Bank, which enables us to withstand times of financial uncertainty.

While most of our Waterstone Mortgage team members have transitioned to working at home for the foreseeable future, our commitment to our customers remains the same. Fortunately, our cloud-based platform and excellent suite of mobility tools will allow us to continue serving our customers and business partners effectively, while maintaining our policy of protecting secure and confidential information.

As social distancing and quarantining becomes more important (and mandated by many states), so does open communication. Our local home loan experts are available to answer any questions via phone call, text message, email, or video chat. It is our priority to be extra-communicative and transparent during this time to ensure that our customers and business partners have the information they need.

Closing Tips for Homebuyers

During this period of the COVID-19 outbreak, many of our title companies are taking the precautionary measure of allowing only the homebuyers to attend closings. This is a temporary measure put in place to adhere to the CDC’s social distancing recommendations.

At Waterstone Mortgage, we also utilize a hybrid eClosing solution, which is a completely secure system that allows our customers to upload documentation securely, preview closing documents in advance, and even eSign any eligible documents prior to the closing date. This not only cuts down face-to-face interaction, but also reduces time at spent at the closing table — providing a better experience for all parties involved.

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The Current Lending Environment

If you’ve been thinking of purchasing a home but are uncertain how that process might look (given our current circumstances), please know we can still help you achieve your dream of homeownership.

Not only are mortgage rates extremely low, historically-speaking, but our local teams are prepared to help you every step of the way — and your health and safety will be our main areas of focus.

Around the nation, requirements for many mortgage loan programs are changing — and some loan types are on hold entirely — due to the current economic circumstances. But, as a lender with an extensive array of mortgage options, we remain committed to finding the best solutions for your mortgage needs, even as the market continues to change.

Even if you would like to pursue a home purchase or refinance in the near future, but would prefer to wait until the current global situation has passed, we are happy to provide expert insight and advise. This may be an ideal time to learn more about your home financing options, so you are ready to move ahead with a purchase or refinance when life returns to normal.

Beware of Potential Scams

Unfortunately, there is an ever-increasing number of cyberattacks and fraud incidences due to COVID-19. Here are a few tips to protect yourself during this time:

  • Personally Identifiable Information (PII) contained in email messages and documents should only be exchanged via encrypted email.
  • Waterstone Mortgage will never request, via email or phone calls, that our customer should generate a wire transfer or other method of sending funds electronically.
  • Please be alert to and challenge any unusual phone calls, email messages, or other requests for information or for financial transactions which seem suspicious. When in doubt, confirm with your Waterstone Mortgage loan originator or another Waterstone Mortgage team member before responding to these requests.
We're Here for You

Our team at Waterstone Mortgage appreciates your support during this challenging time. We are confident that we can work through this difficult situation and still meet our customers’ needs, while ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our homebuyers, business partners, and employees.

If you have additional questions about the homebuying process or any of our procedures as they relate to COVID-19, please reach out to a Waterstone Mortgage loan professional in your area.

Coronavirus Mortgage Relief Options

If you have been financially impacted by the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, you may qualify for mortgage payment relief. There are two important things to know first:

 
Important Things to Know:
We encourage you to make payments for as long as you can afford them and only seek mortgage relief as a last resort.

If you can’t pay your mortgage, or can only pay a portion, please contact your mortgage servicer. You will find the contact information for your mortgage servicer on your mortgage statement. Your mortgage servicer handles the day-to-day administrative tasks of your loan, including receiving payments, sending monthly statements, and managing escrow accounts.
General Eligibility for Mortgage Relief

To be eligible for any sort of coronavirus mortgage payment relief, you should have experienced a financial hardship resulting from the pandemic.

The most common hardship scenarios are:

  • Unemployment
  • Reduction in work hours or wages
  • Illness of a borrower/co-borrower or dependent family member

Your eligibility is specifically determined by your loan’s mortgage servicer, many of whom have prescribed specific programs for COVID-19 hardship-related payment relief.

Payment relief is not payment forgiveness, and you will be required to pay any deferred amounts at a future date.

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How do I Determine if I am Eligible for Mortgage Relief?
  • To understand if you are eligible for any sort of payment relief, contact your mortgage servicer. You will find the contact information for your mortgage servicer on your mortgage statement. The servicer handles the day-to-day administrative tasks of your loan, including receiving payments, sending monthly statements and managing escrow accounts.
  • If Waterstone Mortgage is your servicer, please contact 888.525.7301 to discuss mortgage relief options that may be available to you.
  • Our Waterstone Mortgage Customer Service department can help you to determine your servicer if needed. For assistance, please contact 800.345.1149.
How do I Request Forbearance or Mortgage Relief?

Call Your Servicer

When you call your mortgage servicer, you may have to wait on the phone for an extended period of time because there are many people in need right now. Be prepared with the following information and questions you want to ask. Have your account number and mortgage statement available for the call.

You May Need to Explain

  • Why you’re unable to make your payment and need mortgage relief
  • How long you anticipate you will need relief
  • Details about your income, expenses, and other assets, like cash in the bank

Questions to Ask

  • What options are available to help you temporarily reduce or suspend payments?
  • Are there forbearance, loan modification, or other options?
  • Can you waive late fees?