Homeowners affected by flooding or other severe storm damage should immediately contact their lenders about mortgage payments. The sooner banks and mortgage holders know about an emergency financial situation, the easier it might be to negotiate an alternative payment plan.
As the chief regulator for state chartered banks, the Department of Commerce encourages bankers to work constructively with borrowers in communities affected by flood and storm damage. Those that do will not be subject to examiner criticism. Federal bank regulatory agencies have issued similar communications in the past.
The Minnesota Department of Commerce has assembled information and resources for victims of severe weather-related damage related to home insurance, auto insurance and mortgages in our Handling your Finances after a Disaster publication.
Other government resources:
FEMA/ U.S. Small business Administration (800-462-9029)
Minnesota Energy Assistance Program may offer energy utility bill assistance and/or furnace replacement or repair. (800-657-3710, MN only)
Eligibility for the Minnesota Energy Assistance Programs is based on income. For example, a household of four with an annual income of $40,000 or less would be eligible. More information on these programs is available on the Energy website: www.energy.mn.gov (click on the Low Income Assistance button).
In addition, you can usually look to these community-based resources for information:
Red Cross / Salvation Army
Mortgage Default Information and Counseling (888-234-4935, toll free)
Insurance Federation of Minnesota (800-642-6121)