Treasury Department secretary Tim Geithner and US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) secretary Shaun Donovan together announced new initiatives within the administration's Making Home Affordable (MHA) program. The additional programs aim to increase participation in MHA and offer alternatives where borrowers and servicers cannot achieve modification. The secretaries announced financial incentives for servicers and borrowers who decide to pursue short sales and deeds-in-lieu of foreclousre as an alternative to costly foreclosure in situations where MHA-qualifying borrowers cannot complete the refinance process. The secretaries also announced new financial incentives for modifications by lenders who fear "severe" home price declines may continue in a particular case. "Together the incentive payments on all modified homes will help cover the incremental collateral loss on those modifications that do not succeed," HUD officials said in a media statement moments ago. HUD also said today it requested a $100m investment in its counseling program on housing for fiscal year '10, a $35m increase from the previous-year budget, to support its network of counselors that assist borrowers seeking to refinance through MHA. Write to Diana Golobay.