Tag Archives: HARP

Homebuyers beware of fake HAMP offers


With Home Affordable Refinance Program extended into 2017, it also means that the threat of scammers pretending to offer government-sponsored modifications isn’t going away. Beware.

The threat, as mentioned in a blog piece from PennyMac, focuses on the Home Affordable Modification Program, which will still end at the end of the year, but borrowers should always be on guard for scammers.

PennyMac stresses that borrowers need to beware of fraudulent “Making Home Affordable” offers.

“Owning a home can be expensive and, as one of your largest assets, it’s important to protect. As a homeowner, you may receive hundreds of offers a year to refinance or modify your home loan, promising a lower monthly payment. Unfortunately, not all offers are legitimate,” the blog stated.

The scam:

There are companies out there targeting homeowners with fraudulent offers. These scammers call and mail homeowners pretending to be your mortgage servicer or a representative from the Federal Government’s Home Affordable Modification Program. They prey on unsuspecting homeowners by offering fake loan modifications and “trial payment plans”, along with promises of lower monthly mortgage payments. And while these scammers may send genuine-looking letters with your mortgage company’s logo and account number, they also provide deceptive contact information in an effort to route your payment away from your servicer and directly to them. In fact, they may also call from telephone numbers that show up on caller ID as the homeowner’s actual mortgage company

If borrowers for any reason are uncertain about the offer, PennyMac urges them to contact their lender.

Unfortunately this isn’t the only account of mortgage scams happening, back in March, the Federal Trade Commission and the National Association of Realtors issued a warning to consumers, advising them that they could be the next victim of a mortgage closing cost phishing scheme.

According to the FTC and NAR, scammers were hacking the email accounts of consumers and real estate professionals to obtain information about upcoming real estate transactions.

Feds propose guidelines to replace expiring foreclosure relief efforts

Begun as the government’s response to the foreclosure crisis, the Treasury Department’s Home Affordable Modification Program wasn’t supposed to last forever.

The Dec. 31 end of the foreclosure relief program, which offered a more affordable payment by adjusting interest rates, extending the loan term, and reducing or forbearing principal, will leave a gap that the government is trying to fill.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, created under the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, is proposing consumer protection principles to guide mortgage servicers, investors, government housing agencies and policymakers as they develop foreclosure-relief solutions to replace what is better known by its acronym HAMP.

The Home Affordable Refinance Program, known as HARP, which was designed to help homeowners who’ve seen a drop in home values refinance with better mortgage terms, also expires Dec. 31.

Read on.

Bernie Sanders announces sweeping housing agenda


New Report Reveals That 3 Million Homeowners Have Benefited from HARP

New Report Reveals That 3 Million Homeowners Have Benefited from HARP

(Source: FHFA) – The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced today that the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) has reached a significant milestone: more than 3 million homeowners have now refinanced their mortgages through the program. This noteworthy achievement is detailed in FHFA’s November Refinance Report.“Three million HARP refinances is an important accomplishment and represents real help to families and communities still struggling as a result of the mortgage crisis,” said FHFA Director Mel Watt. “We are continuing our efforts to make sure that those who can take advantage of this program have the information they need to do so.”


California beats other states in HARP activity

California beats other states in HARP activity

California charges ahead as the state with the most borrowers using the Home Affordable Refinancing Program through early 2013, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

According to the article, California HARP borrowers used 14,204 HARP loans in February, up 27 loans from 14,177 in January and 2,990 from 11,214 in December 2012. 

Additionally, the article said Californians are saving more than $4,300 a year on their mortgages. 

Instead of helping, Wells Fargo compounds couples housing nightmare

Instead of helping, bank compounds couples housing nightmare – Business – ReviewJournal.com.


Like thousands of Nevada homeowners, Mel and Yvonne Klien are underwater on their mortgage.


And like many, the retirees were hopeful that they could get some relief from the federal Home Affordable Refinance Program, which would refinance their mortgage at a lower rate even though the Great Recession wiped out their home equity.


But their hopes quickly dissolved in frustration when they learned that Mel, 73, would have to void his will and the couple would have to temporarily give up their state homestead tax exemption in return for a $75 cut in their monthly payment to Wells Fargo & Co.


The price of that relief, they said, was just too high.


“We’ve been trying to refinance our home under the HARP program, which has become a nightmare,” Mel Klien said.


They walked away from HARP when he learned of Wells Fargo’s demand that he revoke his will because it has a “life estate” provision for his 67-year-old wife, allowing her to remain in the home for life while the property would be deeded to his daughters, Susan Burgoyne and Lynn Shea, upon his death.


Read more from Las Vegas Review Journal.