Bank of America set to write down principal on California mortgages

Bank of America (BAC) will begin a new pilot program in the next few weeks, allowing some California homeowners to receive a principal writedown on their mortgage. The program will be funded from the $699.6 million the California Housing Finance Agency received from Treasury Department‘s Hardest Hit Fund last year. A spokesperson for the CalHFA said there is no set amount of loans BofA is targeting, but the bank will be soliciting eligible homeowners soon. CalHFA has not given BofA a limit to the funding “unless they blow us out of the water,” the spokesperson said. CalHFA is in talks with other lenders and servicers, but they did confirm that Guild Mortgage Company will also participate in the program. “We’re really excited to get the program going,” the CalHFA spokesperson said. Rebecca Mairone, the new national mortgage outreach executive at BofA, said in an interview with HousingWire Monday that it would soon begin the California initiative as well as several other states that received Hardest Hit Funds. Earlier in March, BofA announced it was sending letters to Arizona homeowners regarding possible principal writedowns under Hardest Hit Fund programs. Through that program, BofA said it was targeting 8,000 households. Ally Financial (GJM) agreed last week to participate in another principal-writedown program in Michigan, again using the Hardest Hit Fund. Write to Jon Prior. Follow him on Twitter @JonAPrior.

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