Federal Program for Bank and Freddie Mac Foreclosures Losing Steam

by Donald Hanz on Finance Foreclosures

The number of people facing bank and Freddie Mac foreclosures who have gotten long-term loan modification under the U.S. federal government's Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) has dwindled in July. According to latest reports, only more than 36,000 homeowners were able to have their mortgages modified during the month.

The decline in the number of beneficiaries under the HAMP program coincides with the rise in the number of foreclosures around the country, including New York foreclosed homes for sale. July statistics showed that the foreclosure crisis has rebounded, with rates rising by 3.6% compared with June, although the numbers represent a 9.7% decline when compared with July 2009.

The July 2010 figures for homeowners who have avoided losing their homes to foreclosure auctions with the help of HAMP represent a considerable decline compared with June 2010 when over 51,000 borrowers were provided long-term modification assistance. This brings the total of homeowners who have gone beyond the trial phase to 434,717.

However, the number of owners of foreclosure homes for sale who failed to complete the program has also jumped during the month of July, with almost 13,000 having their permanent loan modification benefits canceled. Analysts have stated that renewed interest for the program will likely happen as weakening housing prices have also been recorded in July, with further home price declines expected for the rest of the year.

In addition, Freddie Mac foreclosures and bank foreclosures are also expected to continue rising for the rest of 2010 as latest housing statistics showed that almost 20% of borrowers who are enrolled under HAMP for nine months are at least 60 days behind in their mortgage payments.

Meanwhile, over 96,000 of homeowners who are in the trial period for HAMP have had their modification canceled during the month of July. This brings total cancellations to 616,839 since 2009 when the program was first launched. Cancellations happen when enrollees fail to meet the required payment or fail to submit the necessary paperwork.

Once homeowners are removed from the trial list, almost half are enrolled in alternative modification programs, with majority coming from their loan providers. Reports also showed that 9.8% of those who fell off the program are now facing foreclosures, while 1.8% eventually lost their homes to bank, government or Freddie Mac foreclosures.

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