The homeowners with J.P. Morgan Chase saw an increase in the number of permanent home loan modifications that were currently active as of the February 2011 Making Home Affordable report. This new data has tracked the progression of servicers during the early part of 2011, which has also brought about further accusations against many financial institutions, calls for restructuring of the modification program in general, and there have even been some who feel that these modification efforts should be ended for various reasons.
As an example, some homeowners feel servicers are not doing all they can to offer modifications to homeowners or may not adhere to HAMP policies, which has led some to ask that these banks face fines or penalties from the Treasury Department. However, the modification program is voluntary and Treasury officials have stated they cannot impose fines on banks for not adhering to program guidelines, but there are those who argue that these financial institutions are still seeing increases in the number of active permanent modifications each month despite the fact that there are still problems in the program and many who feel that HAMP has largely been a failure.
However, when it concerns J.P. Morgan Chase, they saw an increase in the number of active permanent modifications they had made from January to February of 2011. The Making Home Affordable report for January stated that Chase had 69,418 active permanent modifications in place, but that number increased to 71,657 as of the report ending February 2011.
Understandably, there are still some homeowners who may not simply benefit from a traditional modification, and this is where extension programs and alternative options have come into play for homeowners working with a variety of financial institutions. While top banks like J.P. Morgan Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo have seen success in terms of increases in the modification program, there are some homeowners who need issues like unemployment or negative equity addressed before they can keep their home and avoid foreclosure.
Chase does participate in some of the extension programs offered through the Making Home Affordable initiative and homeowners who are facing imminent default or who cannot meet their monthly mortgage payment have, in some cases, been able to qualify for alternative forms of assistance, but again, there have been homeowners who have either not met qualifications or did not adhere to guidelines for applying to the modification program. While there are private modifications offered by many major banks, homeowners have also reported similar troubles in these options as there are denials and homeowners are continuing to see defaults even after a lower mortgage payment has been offered.
Yet, homeowners may still contact their servicer directly to ask about available assistance options, speak with a housing counselor approved by the Making Home Affordable Program, or if homeowners live in one of the states offering aid from the Hardest Hit Program, there may also be foreclosure prevention options available in these instances that can help with not only factors like the inability of homeowners to pay their mortgage but may address issues like underwater home loans and unemployment as well. Homeowners do need to remember that modifications are no guarantee and there are no banks that have been perfect in their implementation of these programs, but exploring these options may be helpful in some instances when it comes to helping homeowners avoid foreclosure.