No doubt, you have already heard about the Mortgage Modification Plan that President Obama introduced in February 2009. This was one of his first initiatives upon entering office. The economy was in a downward spin, and there was really no understanding of how far down things would go. The real estate market was reacting similarly. Housing prices were dropping, causing most homeowners to lose equity and many to be upside down in their home mortgage. Foreclosure was at an all-time high. Plants were closing, forcing people into service jobs that paid much less salary. Home sales were stagnant. After a year of operation, how is the program doing?
The latest news is that the program has been successful. The economy as a whole is looking brighter, and the real estate market is showing positive growth signs. Interest rates are down. Over a million homeowners have received lower house payments through a loan modification, saving an average of over $500.00 a month.
The program has been improved in the time since its inception, and many changes were incorporated during the spring of 2010. $1.5 billion dollars was allocated through a program called HFA Hardest Hit Fund. This program encourages the creation of foreclosure-prevention measures that are specific to a certain locale. There is a great deal of flexibility in the way the home finance agencies can adapt this program to their area.
The Mortgage Modification Plan was improved to allow more flexibility with people who are unemployed. There are temporarily modified loan payments to help those homeowners while they are seeking employment. There are additional incentives for banks to actually forgive principal for those who owe more than their home is worth. There are also options through the HAFA program that help those who are unable to get a loan modification that they can afford.