Mortgage assistance for unemployed homeowners typically were sought out in the form of home loan modifications, but many unemployed individuals who may be relying on income solely from unemployment benefits have been unable to sustain the payments that are required within a modification program, even though these monthly payment obligations are lower than their traditional home loan payment. Yet, J.P. Morgan Chase and other top servicers in the nation who are participating in the Making Home Affordable Program may be able to offer certain homeowners an unemployment forbearance on their home loan through the Home Affordable Unemployment Program.
The forbearance options which are available from this extension plan are hoped to lower the number of homeowner foreclosures that are resulting due to unemployment. Servicers like J.P. Morgan Chase who implement these unemployment forbearance plans must allow a homeowner to have either a suspension or reduction in their home loan payments for a minimum of three months.
While it will be up to a servicer as to whether this three-month forbearance period will be extended after a homeowner has taken part in the Unemployment Program, there are those who hope that these types of unemployment mortgage assistance plans will assist homeowners by allowing them to seek employment without the burden of being unable to make mortgage payments or having to relocate.
There are still homeowners who have faced foreclosure no matter what mortgage assistance plan they were offered, but homeowners with J.P. Morgan Chase and other servicers who successfully complete an unemployment forbearance program and are able to find work may be able to either resume their regular payments on their mortgage or at least qualify for a mortgage modification plan which, again, can help prevent foreclosure.
It needs to be understood that no servicer has been perfect in their implementation of these mortgage assistance plans and there are homeowners who continue to face foreclosure as a result. While homeowners are still at odds with many servicers, those who are with J.P. Morgan Chase are being prompted to contact their servicer and began seeking out options that may help him in their unemployment mortgage situation.
Again, forbearance programs may only be delaying inevitable foreclosure for some, but homeowners may be able to get back on their feet during this time of forbearance, find an employment opportunity that may allow them to qualify for modification, or at least begin the process of a foreclosure alternative program which can help them transition to an alternate living arrangement after they have lost their home.