Members of the Americans for Financial Reform coalition have argued that all homeowners should enjoy the same basic protections in their dealings with mortgage loan servicers. On November 20, the CFPB announced a set of proposed new rules that would bring that goal closer to
AFR Joins More than 200 Other Groups in Urging FHFA Director Mel Watt to Reverse Fannie-Freddie Policy on Principal Reduction
Mel Watt is being urged again to end the policy of prohibiting mortgage modifications that reduce the balance of principal. In a joint letter delivered today, more than 200 housing, community, labor, civil rights and consumer groups call on Watt to reverse the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s longstanding ban on principal reduction – a policy put in place by his predecessor.
Americans for Financial Reform, California Reinvestment Coalition, National Fair Housing Alliance, National People’s Action, New Economy Project, and Woodstock Institute praised the CFPB for proposing “a number of positive steps to improve the range and detail of mortgage application and lending information available to financial regulators and the public.” This kind of data, the statement says, “is crucial for regulators and the public to understand the mortgage market, who does and does not have access to credit, and on what terms.”
National Faith, Community and Labor Leaders Call on FHFA Director Watt to Take Action to Help Homeowners and Communities
“We write to you now on behalf of the millions of families who are still struggling with negative home equity, as well as those who are in danger of losing their homes through foreclosure, and the neighbors and communities hurt by foreclosures around them. The need to swiftly reverse the government sponsored enterprise (GSE) policy on principal reduction remains a major priority for many organizations and community members.”
The financial and economic crisis of 2008 was in no small part the result of an out-of-control mortgage lending industry. New rules for that industry – rules developed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) under the Dodd-Frank financial reform law of 2010 – are now in effect. Their arrival is extremely good news for homeowners, aspiring homeowners, and the country as a whole.
“Mel Watt’s confirmation as director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency is heartening news for American families and communities… Under his leadership, the FHFA can be a help rather than a hindrance in efforts to deal with the foreclosure crisis, assist homeowners, and ensure broad access to sustainable and affordable credit.”
More than 100 organizations joined AFR in signing a letter in support of the Mortgage Forgiveness Tax Relief Act. This crucial piece of legislation would protect homeowners who receive principal reduction modifications from devastating tax consequences is set to expire on December 31, 2013, just as the government’s recent settlement with JP Morgan Chase promises additional principal write downs. Congress must act swiftly to extend this legislation.
On Oct. 31, the Senate voted to filibuster the nomination of Representative Mel Watt as Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency. This was an appalling vote on several levels. In the first place, the 46 Senators who said No to cloture were using
Delay and Deny — What Former BofA Employees Were Told to Do With Requests for Mortgage Modifications
Affidavits from six former Bank of America employees say that the Bank required or incentivized employees to lie, falsify records, and more in order to deny borrowers loan modifications they were entitled to under the Home Affordable Mortgage Program (HAMP), pushing them into foreclosure or
Without a neighborhood-by-neighborhood breakdown, “it is impossible to measure the impact of the national mortgage settlement in any meaningful way.”