Foreclosure and Loan Modification Blog

Life After HAMP Part III: Loan Mods in the Trump Era

HAMP, the federal government's loan modification program, expired December 31, 2016, but we're still talking about it in 2018. Loan modifications remain a possibility for homeowners who need help avoiding foreclosure and keeping their home.

What Was HAMP?

In 2009, during the subprime mortgage crisis, foreclosures were happening at a rate not seen since the Great Depression. The Obama administration created HAMP to help struggling homeowners avoid foreclosure by modifying the terms of their loans to make them affordable.

HAMP provided guidelines for modifying mortgages and incentives for lenders to do so rather than foreclose. The program allowed for the term of the loan to be extended, the interest rate to be lowered, and the principal balance to be reduced or restructured so that the monthly mortgage payment was lowered to an affordable percentage of the borrower's current income. 

Loan Modification Saves NJ Homeowner From M&T Bank Foreclosure

Disclaimer: These results should not be taken as a guarantee, as each case is unique. We have helped over 7,000 homeowners. Here is one of their stories.

In January of 2016, a homeowner I'll call Pablo Iglesias (to protect his privacy) retained Amerihope Alliance Legal Services for foreclosure defense and loan modification assistance in order to keep his Bergen County, NJ home.

His servicer and lender are Hudson City Savings Bank, and M&T Bank is the investor in his loan. Iglesias was 15 months and $79,642 past due on his $5,137 a month mortgage payment. He had an unpaid principal balance of $664,000, and an interest rate of 6.625%.

Life After HAMP Part I: Flex Modification Replacing Some Mods

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have announced the creation of the Flex Modification foreclosure prevention program, which will assist struggling homeowners in keeping their homes by lowering their monthly mortgage payments.

Eligible borrowers are expected to receive a 20% reduction in their monthly payment when they participate in the program.

Fannie and Freddie have said that a “high percentage” of borrowers more than 60 days past due on their mortgage will be eligible for participation in the Flex Modification program as well as some less than 60 days delinquent and some who are current on their loan.

Why Were You Denied A Loan Modification After Making Trial Payments?

Having your application for a mortgage loan modification accepted typically means being required to make a series of trial modification payments to prove you're able to pay your mortgage again. Passing that test means you're most of the way to your goal to a permanently modified loan.

But, even after making trial modification payments, some homeowners are still denied a permanently modified mortgage.

Here are some reasons that could happen:

Don't Miss Out! December 30 Last Chance For HAMP Loan Modification

HAMP, the federal government's mortgage loan modification program, is expiring. Your complete application must be submitted by December 30, 2016 in order to be eligible to participate in the program.

The Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) is designed to help homeowners who have experienced a financial hardship, such as loss of income or illness, to get their mortgage back to normal servicing with a lower monthly payment that they can afford long-term.

A lower payment can be achieved by changing the interest rate, extending the term of the loan to as many as 40 years, and/or forgiving or forbearing some of the money owed on the loan.

What is an In-House Loan Modification?

If you're having trouble with your mortgage, you're probably aware of the possibility of getting a loan modification to avoid foreclosure and keep your home. A loan modification is a permanent change to one or more of the terms of your mortgage loan, such as the interest rate, term length, or principal.

The most well-known loan modification program is the federal government's HAMP (Home Affordable Modification Program), which was created in 2009 to help homeowners avoid foreclosure and get a more affordable payment.

But there's another type of loan modification that can be just as good as HAMP. It's called an in-house, or traditional, modification.

An in-house loan modification is not a modification that allows you to stay in your house while your mortgage is being modified. You can do that no matter what type of loan mod you're applying for. (You only have to move out after your house is sold and you've been evicted.)

An in-house loan modification is a proprietary loan mod done by your bank, not through a government program. It's also called traditional because in-house mods have been around since before HAMP was created.

Ditech, Bank of America, and Lost Trial Modification Plan Paperwork

Disclaimer: These results should not be taken as a guarantee, as each case is unique. We have helped over 7,000 homeowners. Here is one of their stories.

Karen Reyes had a problem with the mortgage on her Florida home. (That's not her real name, but a pseudonym to protect our client's real identity.) Mrs. Reyes had fallen behind on her mortgage payments after the death of her husband and the bank wanted to foreclose. 

Post-HAMP Suggestions from the Mortgage Bankers Association

The government's Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), is expiring at the end of 2016, and the mortgage industry has ideas about how to replace it.

HAMP, sometimes referred to as the Obama plan, became available to distressed homeowners in 2009 in response to the financial and foreclosure crises. Its goal has been to help delinquent borrowers keep their home with a more affordable monthly mortgage payment.

Now the Mortgage Bankers Association, a trade group representing the real estate finance industry, has released its own suggestions for how loan modifications should be implemented in a post-HAMP world in 2017 and beyond. It's called One Mod, short for One Modification.

Why Do Mortgage Investors Deny Loan Modifications?

Your mortgage is more complex than it appears. While you typically only deal with your servicer, which takes your payments, credits your account, and forecloses if you default, there's another party involved in your mortgage loan.

This other party, although usually invisible to you, has the biggest stake in your mortgage. I'm talking about the investor. They're the “end user” of your mortgage. They own it and earn a profit from the interest you pay them.

Many homeowners only learn about the existence of an investor in their mortgage when they experience a hardship, can't pay their mortgage, and their servicer tells them that their investor won't allow them to get a loan modification.

FHA Updating Loss Mitigation Options to Make Keeping Home Easier

If your mortgage is insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and you're struggling to keep your home, there's some good news that the FHA recently announced.

The FHA, which is part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), announced “new procedures to strengthen the process mortgage servicers use to help struggling families avoid foreclosure and remain in their homes.”

FHA is accomplishing this by “streamlining its loss mitigation protocols that servicers must use when evaluating and deploying 'home retention options,' foreclosure alternatives that allow delinquent borrowers to retain their home.”

About this Blog

Amerihope Alliance Legal Services is a leading loan modification and foreclosure defense law firm with attorneys licensed in 5 states. We have helped over 7,000 homeowners fight back and keep their homes.

Click to Read Our Super Loan Mod Success Stories

Our goal is to provide valuable information to help homeowners who are trying to obtain a loan modification or to stop foreclosure. You may schedule a free consultation at any time.

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