On Wednesday, July 29, Representatives Taylor (R-TX), Lawson (D-FL), and Barr (R-KY) introduced H.R. 7809, the “Helping Open Properties Endeavor (HOPE) Act,” which provides economic support for the commercial real estate market in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. NAR sent the sponsors a letter of support and thanks. The HOPE Act creates a federally-backed commercial lending facility to assist commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) borrowers which have been negatively impacted by the pandemic. The delinquency rate for CMBS borrowers in June hit 10.32%, nearing the all-time high set in 2012 during the recession. The hotel and retail sectors have been hit especially hard, with delinquency rates of over 24% and 18%, respectively.
The HOPE Act assists these businesses by providing financial assistance for commercial mortgages. Guaranteed by the Department of the Treasury, the HOPE Preferred Equity lending facility will prevent commercial foreclosures and ensure that those businesses will survive to rehire their employees and assist in the country’s economic recovery.