Tag Archives: foreclosure

Real Estate Agents: New Housing rules aimed at saving widowers from foreclosure

Consumer advocates say widows and widowers nationwide are falling into a bureaucratic black hole.

Although servicers will generally accept their loan payments, surviving homeowners who are not on the mortgage face significant resistance when they seek loan modifications once they’ve fallen behind on payments — often because they’ve lost their spouse’s income.

“They are being told they can’t do anything to prevent foreclosure,” said Charles Evans, an attorney with pro bono law firm Public Counsel, which is assisting Sequeira.

The problem is growing, advocates say, and has caught the attention of federal regulators and state lawmakers.

In just the first three months of this year, the Housing and Economic Rights Advocates, a statewide advocacy group, had handled 16 such cases.

In a 2013 survey, conducted by the California Reinvestment Coalition, 44% of housing counselors said that servicers “always” or “almost always” declined to discuss loan modifications with widowed clients when they weren’t on the loan. Last year, housing counselors across the country surveyed by the National Housing Resource Center gave servicers a poor rating for communication with widows, widowers and others in similar circumstances.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is preparing to release regulations this summer that will assist widows and other so-called successors-in-interest. And the state Senate Judiciary Committee is set to vote Tuesday on a bill designed to give surviving spouses, domestic partners and children the same protections borrowers have in the Homeowner Bill of Rights, including the right to sue to stop a foreclosure or for economic damages after one occurs.

The bill, SB-1150, by Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) and Sen. Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton), would prevent servicers from moving forward with a foreclosure before requesting “reasonable” documentation of the borrower’s death and the identity of the survivor.

Dual tracking would be barred and servicers would be required to give accurate information about mortgage assumptions and foreclosure-prevention programs, while appointing a single point of contact for survivors.

Although the bill doesn’t require a modification be given — applicants must be able to show they can afford even the smaller loan payment — the intent is to give survivors a fair shot at getting one. It would, for example, allow delinquent survivors to get a loan modification without first getting current on payments.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is preparing to release regulations this summer that will assist widows and other so-called successors-in-interest. And the state Senate Judiciary Committee is set to vote Tuesday on a bill designed to give surviving spouses, domestic partners and children the same protections borrowers have in the Homeowner Bill of Rights, including the right to sue to stop a foreclosure or for economic damages after one occurs.

The bill, SB-1150, by Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) and Sen. Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton), would prevent servicers from moving forward with a foreclosure before requesting “reasonable” documentation of the borrower’s death and the identity of the survivor.

Dual tracking would be barred and servicers would be required to give accurate information about mortgage assumptions and foreclosure-prevention programs, while appointing a single point of contact for survivors.

Although the bill doesn’t require a modification be given — applicants must be able to show they can afford even the smaller loan payment — the intent is to give survivors a fair shot at getting one. It would, for example, allow delinquent survivors to get a loan modification without first getting current on payments.

read more: http://www.latimes.com/business/realestate/la-fi-widow-foreclosures-20160503-story.html

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Fed Homeowner Aid Program Rejects 70% of Applicants

Seven in 10 homeowners who apply for help under the federal government’s signature mortgage aid program are rejected, according to a government report released Wednesday.

The program, called the Home Affordable Modification Program, is meant to help homeowners who are at risk of foreclosure stay in their homes by reducing their monthly mortgage. Since it began in 2009, 5.7 million homeowners have applied for assistance and 4 million have been rejected, according to data provided by the Treasury Department to the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

Under HAMP, homeowners who are struggling to pay their mortgage apply for a modification that will lower their monthly bill. That application is reviewed by the mortgage servicer, who runs a standardized calculation to determine if they will receive more money from the homeowner at the current payment level, or with a reduced monthly payment. (Think about how much a lender would receive, in total, if a borrower paid a mortgage of $1,000 for three months and then stopped making payments and the house was foreclosed on, compared to a borrower making $600 payments until the loan was fully paid off.) If the servicer will get more money in the long run by collecting less each month, and the homeowner meets other guidelines — such as that they live in the home and took the mortgage out before 2009 — they are supposed to be approved under Treasury guidelines. Mortgage servicers are required to follow these guidelines.

read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/homeowner-aid-program-rejected-applicants_55b8e0fce4b0224d883490b6?

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Foreclose and Default Trends Stay Near Low – San Diego

Foreclosures and default notices in San Diego County edged up in January, but are still hovering around post-Great Recession lows.

Last month, lenders foreclosed on 149 properties in San Diego County and issued 490 default notices, which kick off the 90-day foreclosure process, real estate tracker DataQuick reported Tuesday.

While the overall trend is down, January’s default notices jumped 58 percent above January 2013’s tally of 310. They were also up from the 387 filed in December.

“That’s disconcerting and something to keep an eye on,” said Mark Goldman, a loan officer and real estate lecturer at San Diego State University.

“It’s probably too early to blame it on something like Congress deciding not to extend unemployment benefits. If that were a factor, we’d see that coming up in the next 60 days.”

A year ago, default notices dropped from 878 in December 2012 to 310 in January 2013. They were back up to 551 in February.

Andrew LePage, an analyst for San Diego-based DataQuick, said the reason for last year’s low number could have been due to the initiation of the Homeowner Bill of Rights, which mandated banks not file a default notice while a short sale or loan modification was in progress.

That also could be why the January 2013 to January 2014 year-over-year change looks high.

In foreclosures, lenders repossessed 149 homes in January, up from 136 in December.

read more at: http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2014/feb/19/tp-foreclose-and-default-trends-stay-near-lows/

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