Number of borrowers winning foreclosure relief inches up in June
The number of troubled borrowers gaining permanent mortgage relief from the administration's main foreclosure assistance program inched up just 3.7% from May to June, the government said Friday.
The Home Affordable Modification Program was launched in early 2009 with the aim of helping 3 million to 4 million homeowners avoid foreclosure through 2012. But only 657,044 people had qualified for a permanent mortgage modification through June 30, according to government statistics.
The program provides cash incentives for lenders to reduce monthly payments through a variety of means. In June, the Obama administration punished three of the nation's largest banks -- Bank of America Corp., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo & Co. -- judging their performance in the program as in need of "substantial improvement" and unworthy of receiving financial incentives.
The move was the first time that the administration had taken any major punitive action against the banks, but advocates decried the move as too little too late. Another assessment of mortgage servicer performance in the program is due in September.
The Los Angeles metro area has had the most people receiving permanent modifications through the program, with 46,860 people having had their loans modified through June. The Riverside-San Bernardino metro area had the third largest number of people receiving modifications through the program, with 40,678 through June.
-- Alejandro Lazo
Photo: Thousands of homeowners gathered at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles June 2 for help with loan modifications as part of the "Save the Dream" event put on by the Neighborhood Assistance Corp. of America
Credit: Nick Ut / Associated Press