Backhoe operator Keith Henry levels a storm-damaged home in the Breezy Point section of the Queens borough of New York, Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012. The splintered plywood, mangled appliances and sodden sheetrock, as well as shreds of clothing and family photos will be added to the increasing piles of rubble being cleared in New York as the cleanup from Superstorm Sandy continues. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
NEW YORK (AP) - Federal mortgage payment relief has been extended up to one year for more than 200,000 homeowners whose houses were damaged by Superstorm Sandy.
U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan announced the extension for homeowners with Federal Housing Administration-insured loans on Friday.
A previous mortgage payment extension for federally-backed home loans was set to expire on April 30. About 286,000 homeowners with FHA-insured loans were affected by the late October storm, with nearly 96,000 in New York.
Donovan said the 12-month extension was meant to help homeowners still struggling to rebuild avoid foreclosure.