Harrisburg, PA – Although renters and homeowners need to continue making monthly payments in most cases to the landlords or mortgages, Pennsylvanians who find themselves in a tough housing situation due to COVID-19 and financial hardships now have some protection from foreclosure or eviction.
Governor Tom Wolf was joined by Attorney General Josh Shapiro to announce that he signed an executive order that protects Pennsylvanians from foreclosures or evictions through July 10.
The action builds on a Pennsylvania Supreme Court order which closed court eviction proceedings until May 11 and ensures no renter or homeowner will be removed from their home for 60 more days.
“At a time when people need to stay home to protect their health, they should not have to worry about losing their homes,” said Governor Wolf. “Ensuring that people can remain in their homes will help them to better protect their loved ones. It gives families the comfort of knowing they will have a place to live while all of us work together to fight COVID-19 and prepare to move Pennsylvania forward.”
“I commend the Governor for his decision to delay eviction and foreclosure proceedings. We know it’s critical for public health, and for our economic recovery, that people stay in their homes during this emergency,” said Attorney General Shapiro. “This order gives people struggling with lost income something they can count on — a roof over their heads.”
In almost all circumstances, renters and homeowners are required to continue making monthly payments. If you are a Pennsylvanian struggling to make your monthly payments, you should contact your landlord or mortgage servicer immediately.
The Wolf Administration provided recommendations last week to stem foreclosures, evictions and help people experiencing homelessness. The Department of Human Services activated the commonwealth’s Sheltering Taskforce and is working with local and state partners to coordinate resources for people without housing. The Department of Community and Economic Development is also accepting applications for Emergency Solutions Grants to assist with the rapid rehousing of people experiencing homelessness, street outreach, homelessness prevention, and emergency shelter activities.
PHFA is also taking action to help homeowners and renters. The agency has stopped foreclosures and evictions and is offering forbearances with late fee waivers to homeowners with a PHFA mortgage who are experiencing a financial hardship because of COVID-19. PHFA also developed a list of renters’ rights and responsibilities to clarify the situation for apartment residents and is working with landlords and property managers to distribute it to renters. PHFA is also encouraging Low-Income Housing Tax Credit building managers to be flexible on rent payments and to waive late fees for tenants whose employment has been affected by the crisis.
“During the past few weeks, we’ve had great cooperation from Pennsylvanians who understand that staying home is not just about protecting themselves, it’s about protecting everyone in the community,” said Gov. Wolf.
This executive order takes one more burden off people who are struggling and gives them more time to get back on their feet.
More helpful information is available from the following:
• Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency
• United Way of PA
• Consumer Finance Protection Bureau
• U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
• HUD Approved Housing Counseling Agencies
• Fannie Mae
• Freddie Mac
• FHFA Foreclosure and Eviction Assistance