ducey presser

Gov. Doug Ducey issues remarks during a Monday news conference.

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Homeowners will not face foreclosure or eviction in Arizona for at least two months, according to an agreement Governor Doug Ducey made with the state's banks.

"We know many families and businesses are in need of immediate relief, and with April 1 fast approaching this agreement will help ensure no Arizonan loses their home or business at the end of the month," Ducey said in a statement. "We have a long road ahead of us, and we'll need the continued partnership of Arizona's banks and landlords to help those facing economic loss because of COVID-19."

Under the new agreement, banks will temporarily suspend foreclosures and evictions for families and small businesses. The agreement covers at least 60 days, with the potential to extend the temporary measure as long as the state is under a state of emergency.

For Timothy Willbanks, the new agreement is a lifeline. Willbanks is a father, a full-time employee, and a full-time student. He owns a home in Phoenix and is facing foreclosure on his mortgage VA backed loan through Wells Fargo.

"I want to keep it for me and my kids, especially with everything going on right now," Willbanks said. "If I get an extra 90 days on there, that is something I can catch up on. A little extra time can go a long way."

Wells Fargo confirmed to 3 On Your Side that the bank has temporarily stopped all foreclosure related activities for customers with veterans assistance loans.

In an emailed statement, the company said, "We’ve reached out to Mr. Willbanks to confirm that we won’t be moving forward with any foreclosure activity on his account while the temporary halt is in effect.”

The temporary relief does not mean borrowers are off the hook. Financial obligations must still be met, according to Ducey's office.

"This is a difficult situation for all of us, and the banking sector in this state is committed to doing everything we can to assist Arizonans in this time of need," said Jack Barry of the Arizona Bankers Association.

Homeowners who are facing financial issues related to the coronavirus emergency should notify their banks of hardship before bills are due.

WATCH: Paying your rent during coronavirus crisis

 

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