HousingWire | Fake press release announces Fannie Mae principal reduction program

HousingWire | Fake press release announces Fannie Mae principal reduction program.

Just to be clear: This is not happening.

A fake press release with Fannie Mae letterhead, links and contact information was sent to some media outlets, announcing a new principal reduction program.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency shut down the idea in August. Outside of fully funded principal payments from fellow taxpayers as part of select state programs, no borrowers can receive write-downs from a GSE.

The fictional HomeRight Community Relief Program would force servicers to reduce principal “to reflect their current market value” through HAMP modifications. A phone number is even assigned to press contact Andrew Wilson, but the area code is from Georgia – not really close to McLean, Va., where Fannie is based.

Groups protested at Fannie and Freddie Mac offices around the country this week, calling for the mortgage giants to reduce principal for borrowers who owe more on their loan their home is worth.

A Fannie legal team is tracking down who put out the release. A phone call to the number provided was not returned.

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