This week, the Federal Housing Administration is mailing hundreds of thousands of letters to homeowners at risk of losing their homes through foreclosure and urging them to consider a safer, more affordable alternative to the high-cost mortgages they are currently paying. The first round of 280,000 letters was mailed in February. The public awareness campaign will continue through September, and target roughly 850,000 distressed homeowners, officials with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development said Thursday morning. "This letter might be the most important piece of mail many of these families will receive all year," said new HUD Secretary Steve Preston. "This information could not only help save their current home, it could help provide them with long term financial security. This outreach campaign will ensure families are aware of the safe mortgage alternative offered by FHA." Letters are being sent to homeowners who have already faced or are experiencing the first reset of their adjustable rate mortgages, and tout the FHA's temporary ability to insure loans valued as high as $729,750. That lending limit could become permanent, depending on the outcome a housing package currently being debate by Congressional leaders. Bipartisan FHA Modernization legislation awaiting final action by the Senate and House of Representatives would permanently increase the loan limits. The letter touts the FHASecure lending program, as well as directing consumers to call an FHA-sponsored and staffed phone line -- noticeably absent is any direction towards HOPE NOW and its related counseling agencies. For more information, visit http://www.fha.gov.