As Pomona foreclosure defense attorneys, we routinely work with people who have applied for HAMP loan modifications and encountered numerous problems. So we were interested to see that the House Financial Services Committee recently voted to end the Home Affordable Modification Program, the major government program that encourages loan modifications. The 32-23 vote was largely supported by Republicans, who have repeatedly said HAMP is a failure. Democrats defend it as a useful tool even if it isn't achieving its goals. The bill is considered likely to pass the Republican-controlled full House of Representatives, but not to pass the Democrat-controlled Senate. President Obama has said publicly that he will not sign the bill.
It is not disputed that HAMP has fallen far short of its goals. Only about 500,000 borrowers have gotten full loan modifications through the program out of many millions who are eligible, and only $1 billion has been spent out of an allocated $30 billion (from the TARP fund). However, Republicans contend that the program is a waste of money and ineffective, while Democrats say it's useful as an incentive to lenders to continue making loan modifications. The committee vote was along party lines, and a political expert in the article said the move was made to satisfy the Republicans' voter base. Consumer advocates argue that the problem with HAMP is its lack of any accountability or enforcement mechanism, which allows lenders to break rules with impunity.
Our Highland foreclosure defense lawyers have been working in this field since the beginning of the housing crisis and have spoken to many, many clients who have been frustrated by their interactions with lenders. That's why we agree that HAMP's main problem is accountability -- because we've heard it over and over from borrowers. Without penalties for breaking rules, lenders are free to start parallel foreclosures and loan modifications; deny loan modifications or decline to make them permanent for arbitrary reasons or no reason; and repeatedly lose paperwork. All of these are very common complaints from borrowers, before and after the rules were made -- but to enforce them, borrowers have to sue and hope for the best.
At Howard Law PC, we help borrowers give this kind of lawsuit the best possible chance of success in a California court. Right now, we frequently hear from homeowners who were wrongly denied a modification, or have been denied a permanent modification after meeting all of the requirements during a trial modification. Both of these are forms of predatory lending, and we believe borrowers can and should fight back in court. Our Westminster foreclosure defense attorneys prefer to negotiate when possible, but we know lawsuits get the lenders' attention very effectively and send the message that you're willing to protect your rights. Suing can also stop a foreclosure sale that's expected very soon, giving borrowers time to get a judge's opinion on their right to fair consideration of their loan modification requests.
If you're fighting for a fair loan modification with a loan servicer that clearly doesn't seem interested in granting one, Howard Law may be able to help. To set up a free consultation, send us a message online or call us toll-free at 1-800-872-5925.