Are you having a hard time paying your mortgage? Have you already defaulted? If you want to keep your home you should look into getting a loan modification to avoid foreclosure and get your mortgage back to normal. A loan modification can even result in a lower monthly payment and principal forgiveness or forbearance.
To get a loan modification you'll need to work with your loan servicer, which is the company that takes your payments, credits your account, and forecloses on you when you stop paying.
But your servicer isn't necessarily the owner of your loan. That's the investor, and they're the one that has the power to approve or deny your loan modification application.
Some companies, like Ocwen, only service loans, and don't invest in any loans. But some banks, like Citi (aka Citigroup or Citibank), could be both the servicer of and investor in a mortgage, or just one and not the other.
Citigroup is one of the “big four” banks in the U.S. along with Wells Fargo, Bank of America, and JPMorgan Chase. Citi is involved in a lot of mortgages, many of which have defaulted on at one point. We've helped many homeowners who have a mortgage with Citi save their their home through a modification.
Here are some things about getting a loan modification with Citi that you should know:
1. If Citi is the investor in your loan, no matter who the servicer is, you are required to be considered for a HAMP modification if you're eligible.
Banks that received bailout money from the government are required to evaluate eligible borrowers for the government's HAMP program. Citi, like all of the big banks, took billions from the government after incurring huge losses during the financial crisis, and therefore must consider eligible homeowners for HAMP loan modifications.
Basic eligibility requirements for HAMP:
- You are having difficulty making your mortgage payments due to a valid hardship.
- You have defaulted or are in danger of falling behind on your mortgage.
- You got your mortgage on or before January 1, 2009.
- Your property is not been condemned.
- You owe up to $729,750 on your primary residence.
2. If CitiMortgage is your servicer, and your investor is a private institution, they're not required to consider you for a HAMP modification.
CitiMortgage is the servicing arm of Citigroup. They may service your loan for another investor that owns your loan. Private investors don't participate in HAMP. They can choose to offer in-house mods, but they will do so on their own terms.
3. CitiMortgage could offer you an in-house modification if you're not eligible for HAMP.
If CitiMortgage is your servicer, but you have a private investor or aren't eligible for HAMP, you can be evaluated for their in-house modification program called Citi Modification.
Citi Modification eligibility requirements are similar to those for HAMP and can be found in detail here.
4. There are a variety of other loan modification options, depending on the insurer/guarantor/investor.
CitiMortgage's website states that if your loan is insured, guaranteed, or owned by Federal Housing Authority (FHA), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Rural Housing Services (RHS), Veterans Administration (VA), or any other investor, you may be eligible to be evaluated for a modification specific to those types of loans.
Loan modifications are often the only option a distressed homeowner has to save their home. There are different possibilities depending on your loan servicer and investor. Here are a few last things to keep in mind.
HAMP is expiringis expiring December 31, 2016. Your application must be in by that date, and the modification must be effective on or before September 30, 2017. Time is running out. If you feel that you could benefit from a HAMP mod, now is the time to apply.
Loan modifications aren't typically approved without a significant amount of paperwork being submitted to the loan servicer. Citi has a reputation for being particularly demanding in the amount paperwork they require. It's a lot of work, and many of the people who apply on their own are denied.
You can maximize your odds of a positive outcome by working with an attorney who understands the loan modification process. An experienced lawyer can also defend you from foreclosure while a loan mod is being pursued.
Again, we've helped many homeowners who have a mortgage with Citi save their their home through a modification. You can see some of our successful Citi case results here.