updated 12/1/2010 12:56:45 PM ET 2010-12-01T17:56:45

Freddie Mac said Wednesday that it will suspend foreclosure evictions from Dec. 20 through Jan. 3 of next year.

The temporary suspension applied only to those homes that have mortgages backed or guaranteed by Freddie Mac. This is the third straight year Freddie Mac has suspended evictions during the holiday season.

Fannie Mae, its sibling company, also won't be evicting people from their homes over the holidays, said company spokeswoman Janis Smith. The company has yet to put out a release regarding the suspension.

Washington-based Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac own or guarantee about half of all U.S. mortgages. They purchase home loans from lenders, package them into bonds with a guarantee against default and sell them to investors.

The pair nearly went under in September 2008. The government rescued them and estimates that will cost taxpayers up to $259 billion.

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Data: Latest rates in the US

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Home equity type Today +/- Chart
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