Wells Fargo and Wachovia Mortgage had seen both foreclosure difficulties and some success in their modification efforts throughout the previous year, but there are homeowners who are concerned about troubles that may be faced in 2011 and what modification efforts may be available from various mortgage servicers. Obviously, homeowners must deal directly with their mortgage servicer when seeking out some form of loss mitigation through a home loan modification program, but these issues that homeowners have faced tend to be unaided by traditional modification efforts in some cases, and this has led to questions as to what methods of assistance servicers may use in the coming months.
The Making Home Affordable Program is still available to homeowners with servicers like Wells Fargo and Wachovia Mortgage, but there are also some homeowners who have benefited from in-house modification plans from servicers as well. While federal assistance plans through the Making Home Affordable Program do continue to see increases in the number of permanent modifications that have been made, the latter part of 2010 saw an increase in the number of foreclosures in relation to these permanent modifications. Essentially, the number of homeowners facing foreclosure gained ground on those who were being offered permanent assistance through the federal mortgage modification program.
However, servicers like Wells Fargo/Wachovia Mortgage who participate in proprietary home loan modification programs did report, overall, more success in terms of permanent modification offers to homeowners as these in-house, alternative initiatives set forth by various financial institutions are able to address homeowners on a case-by-case basis, as there are no universal guidelines and qualifications that must be met.
While it’s predicted that a decrease in home values will be an issue in 2011, these problems were also present last year as these programs were implemented for homeowners in a negative equity situation. However, solutions to negative equity problems may be needed by not only Wells Fargo/Wachovia Mortgage homeowners, but homeowners with a variety of servicers and, for this reason, there are also some predictions that options like short sales may become more available to those in need.
Homeowners will inevitably still face foreclosure as the economy still struggles in some areas, housing prices stay low, and unemployment remains high. Yet, there are options with the help of housing counselors or by working directly with a servicer for homeowners to avoid foreclosure through either these prevention efforts, like modifications, or from short sell opportunities which can help homeowners avoid a formal foreclosure process when they cannot benefit from foreclosure prevention assistance. While these options are not open to all homeowners, programs to address foreclosure problems are still in place and, as reports on the modification efforts in December of 2010 are set to be released in the near future, it’s hoped that modification assistance success that was seen last year will continue.