By: Lance T. Denha, Esq.
Being that we are at the half way point of 2016, it’s getting close to the end of government sponsored loan modification programs. If you’re looking for mortgage help, you better apply soon. If you haven’t applied by December 31, 2016, mortgage relief options could be limited.
The Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) is a government program that was introduced in 2009 to respond to the subprime mortgage crisis. HAMP is part of the Making Home Affordable program (MHA). HAMP and MHA programs were designed to help financially struggling homeowners to avoid foreclosure by modifying loans to a level that is affordable for borrowers now and sustainable over the long term.
Borrowers must apply on or before December 31, 2016 in order to be considered for a HAMP loan modification. You will need to be eligible for HAMP and your mortgage company must participate.
If a borrower meets the deadline, the lender will need to make a decision by September 2017. This doesn’t mean you’re going to get approved. If you pass the deadline and find out HAMP is not an option, you’re not going to be able to get reviewed for short sale and deed in lieu programs offered under the government sponsored programs. If you miss the deadline, you may have limited options.
U.S Mortgage companies participate with MHA programs like HAMP, and HAFA, the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative Program. Some mortgage companies include Bank of America, Citi Mortgage, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo. Some loan servicer’s many participate as well like Ocwen Loan Servicing, Nationstar Mortgage and Seterus. Even if your loan servicer participates, you’ll need to make sure your lender participates as well.
There are many guidelines and qualifications in order to get a government program. If you think you’re going to need mortgage help, you owe more on your mortgage than your home is worth, or facing foreclosure, get help now. You should find out if there are options. It is advisable to, at the very least, get a clear picture of what possibilities are out there to better educate yourself for the future.
Calendar year 2016 may in fact be your last year to get mortgage help. If you don’t act fast, you could miss out on other foreclosure alternative programs. Seek out legal advice or advice from a housing counseling agency to get a clear picture of your options moving forward.