California Helps Struggling Homeowners

The federal plans to assist homeowners who are facing foreclosure or are underwater with their mortgages, specifically the Home Affordability Modification Program (HAMP) have not lived up to promises. States are  now realizing that it is up to them to deal with these issues, and California is one of the first states to create four new statewide mortgage aid programs that actually look promising.

Keep Your Home California plans to offer $2 billion in aid, and aims to assist 100,000 households to avoid foreclosure…the goal is to keep people in their homes. Each program requires the participation of the mortgage servicer. One of the biggest obstacles with the federal programs were lack of participation, however, some of the biggest mortgage service providers have already signed on and agreed to assist with the program. Others are involved in some of the programs, but housing agency officials expect the number to grow in time. Funding comes from the U.S. Treasury.

The program goal is to help low- and moderate-income families stay in their homes where there has been financial hardship. death, illness/disability, or recent increase in monthly mortgage payments creating a risk of default. Here is what the programs intend to provide:

1.   Offer up to $3000 a month for homeowners who are unemployed, for up to 6 months.

2.  Offer up to $15,000 per household to assist those who have fallen behind in payments due to temporary changes in housing circumstances

3.  Offer relocation assistance to homeowners who have already completed short sales or deed in lieu of foreclosures

4.  Offer monetary compensation to cut mortgage balances owed on homes that are worth significantly less than the amount owed by the borrower

To view a list of participating servicers or receive further information, visit http://www.keepyourhomecalifornia.org/ or call 888-954-KEEP(5337). If you live outside of California you should contact your state offices to see if there are any similar programs planned for your state.

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