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Borrowers will get a chance to file complaints electronically with the monitor of the $25 billion foreclosure settlement with the largest mortgage servicers.
Joseph Smith, the former North Carolina banking commissioner, will allow borrowers to fill out an online form (found here) if there are problems with consumer relief banks must provide under the terms of the deal.
The 49 state attorneys general and federal prosecutors will force Bank of America ($13.44 -0.07%), JPMorgan Chase ($53.02 0%), Citigroup ($51.66 0%), Wells Fargo ($40.68 0.48%) and Ally Financial to pay remediation and grant mortgage assistance for borrowers under the terms.
For some, the relief has already begun. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan said tens of thousands already received principal reductions. BofA sent offers to 200,000 potentially eligible borrowers this week. Citi extinguished principal in the first quarter it previously placed in forbearance.
Banks receive more credit under the settlement for relief granted in the first year. And while Smith continues to ramp up his oversight, he will use the online forms to monitor early developments.
"Lawyers, caseworkers and other consumer advocates are the eyes and ears on the ground who will know first, and know intimately, what kind of difference these payments, adjustments and programs are making," Smith said. "That's why we've created this dedicated tool – to see what they're seeing."
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