Fannie Mae last week announced it would extend the suspension of foreclosure sales and evictions from single-family properties through Jan. 31, 2009, enabling the company to work with mortgage servicers to further implement the Streamlined Modification Program (SMP) announced on Nov. 11 and initiated on Dec. 15. The extension also will provide additional time for the company to operationalize its new National REO Rental Policy.
The temporary suspension of foreclosures will allow affected borrowers facing foreclosure to retain their homes while Fannie Mae works with mortgage servicers to implement the SMP. Foreclosure attorneys and loan servicers have been instructed to use the additional time to reach out to borrowers and continue to pursue workout options. The initiative applies to loans owned or securitized by Fannie Mae.
The SMP is aimed at the borrower who has missed three payments or more, owns and occupies the primary residence, and has not filed for bankruptcy. The program creates a fast-track method for getting troubled borrowers into an affordable monthly payment through a mix of reducing the mortgage interest rate, extending the life of the loan, or even deferring payments on part of the principal. Servicers have flexibility in the approach, but the objective is to create a more affordable payment for borrowers at risk of foreclosure.
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