Personal financial assistance for REALTORS®
Here is a summary of recent government actions to alleviate financial hardship due to COVID-19.
REALTORS®, their family members, and their clients, as well as most Americans, with incomes below the thresholds are receiving cash payments of $1,200 per adult from the federal government. In addition to that, there is an additional $500 for each child under the age of 17. The issuing of these payments started at the beginning of April.
More information on additional assistance are below.
Property Tax Extension
King County has extended their property tax deadline to June 1, 2020.
Individual residential and commercial taxpayers who pay property taxes themselves, rather than through their mortgage lender, can delay payment until June 1, 2020 due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Banks and other financial institutions that pay property taxes on behalf of their lending customers will still need to meet the original April 30 deadline.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced on April 1 that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) will offer mortgage relief options tailored to those with FHA-insured mortgages (Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, HUD, VA and USDA) and are unable to make their payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Effective immediately for borrowers with a financial hardship that makes them unable to pay their mortgage due to the COVID-19 National Emergency, mortgage servicers must extend deferred or reduced mortgage payment options – called forbearance – for up to six months, and must provide an additional six months of forbearance if requested by the borrower. This mandate implements provisions contained in the landmark Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) which President Trump signed into law on March 27, 2020.”
Homeowners who need assistance with their mortgage payments are encouraged to contact their mortgage servicer to discuss their options.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is sending out Economic Impact Payments for taxpayers, which includes taxpayers who filed tax returns in 2018 and 2019 and most seniors and retirees. These payments are sent electronically (or alternatively a paper check).
U.S. residents will receive the Economic Impact Payment of $1,200 for individual or head of household filers, and $2,400 for married filing jointly if they are not a dependent of another taxpayer and have a work eligible Social Security number with adjusted gross income up to:
- $75,000 for individuals
- $112,500 for head of household filers and
- $150,000 for married couples filing joint returns
Taxpayers will receive a reduced payment if their AGI is between:
- $75,000 and $99,000 if their filing status was single or married filing separately
- 112,500 and $136,500 for head of household
- $150,000 and $198,000 if their filing status was married filing jointly
The amount of the reduced payment will be based upon the taxpayers specific adjusted gross income.
REALTORS® with retirement accounts, including IRAs, can take early withdrawals of up to $100,000 from those accounts without having to pay the 10% early-withdrawal penalty. Those who withdraw such funds can re-contribute them to the plan over three years or can keep the money and pay the tax on the withdrawals over a three-year period.
REALTORS® aged 70 1/2 or older do not have to worry about taking required minimum distributions from retirement plans in 2020, or to pay the taxes on those distributions.
The IRS also announced that the deadline to file and pay federal income taxes is extended to July 15, 2020.
Tools and Technology Support for REALTORS®
NAR’s Right Tools, Right Now
The National Association of REALTORS® activated their Right Tools, Right Now initiative to support members with new and existing NAR products and services available for free or at significant discounts.
This initiative includes webinars to help manage finances, education courses, market reports to inform your business and clients, and digital tools for marketing and transactions.
Free tech support by WR Tech Helpline
No need to drop off your device with a tech support provider at a cost. Washington REALTORS®’ Tech Helpline is available to you at no additional cost because it is included in your membership.
Tech Helpline can help talk you through setting up hardware or software, mobile apps, help solve virus issues, and more.