Loan Modification – Does It Really Work?
Recently in a hearing, called by the bipartisan Congressional Oversight Panel, which was given the responsibility of monitoring the government’s foreclosure bailout programs, the panel members pounded the Treasury Department for the shortcomings in its mortgage loan modification process. This hearing came only days after a report issued from the inspector general showed the agency’s efforts didn’t have clear benchmarks and fell horribly short of its original goals.
Despite early expectations that the Home Affordable Modification Program would assist millions of troubled Americans rework their loans and keep their homes, the loan modification program thus far has resulted in fewer than 500,000 permanent loan modifications. While this is significant, it pales when compared with the more than 7 million homes facing foreclosure.
Loan Modification Program – Falling Painfully Short Of Expectations
Panel member Richard Neiman, superintendent of banks for the state of New York, stated the loan modification program has “fallen far short of our hopes.” J. Mark McWatters, another panel member, an attorney and accountant, said the administration had “failed to provide meaningful relief to distressed homeowners” and that its original projections had generated false hopes and expectations in that the loan modification program would help far more homeowners.
Phyllis Caldwell, head of the Treasury Department’s homeownership preservation office, took up for the Obama administration efforts, saying that the impact of its foreclosure mitigation programs should not be judged by the number of permanent loan modifications alone.
Loan Modification – Trial Program
She said a trial loan modification – which consists of three months of reduced mortgage payments – have given families desperately needed time and space, even if they don’t become permanent. She also said the Treasury Department is changing and expanding the loan modification programs in hopes of reaching more troubled homeowners.
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Loan Modification – is it worth the trouble?