By Les Christie
Homeowners facing foreclosure just received an early Christmas present: They won't be evicted from their homes over the holidays.
Mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced Monday that they will suspend all bank repossessions beginning Dec. 17 and Dec. 19, respectively, and will not resume the evictions until Jan. 2, 2013.
"The holidays are a chance to be with loved ones, and we want to relieve some stress at this time of year," said Terry Edwards, Executive Vice President of Credit Portfolio Management, Fannie Mae.
According to Freddie spokesman Brad German, the suspension will not affect other pre- or post-foreclosure activities, such as the filing notices of default or the scheduling of auction sales. Fannie said in its press release that other legal and administrative proceedings will also continue.
Bank of America said it will also put a halt to foreclosure evictions both for loans it owns and for those it services for investors during the holiday period. Other large mortgage lenders, including JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Citibank, have postponed foreclosures during the holidays in the past, but have yet to say whether they will do so again this year.
The reprieve is separate from the previously announced moratoriums on foreclosure evictions for victims of Superstorm Sandy in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, which will continue through February.
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