There have been numerous homeowners who have had to turn to bankruptcy after being denied a trial or permanent home loan modification from HAMP but there have been some positive reports as of late in this particular area as data for homeowners through the month of April has shown that there was relatively little change in the number of homeowners who turned to bankruptcy earlier this year. The most recent report from the Making Home Affordable Program was released in July, but here in the early parts of August it’s expected that the Treasury Department will provide more information on the progress of servicers in various areas, but when it comes to a Citigroup and their homeowners who have filed bankruptcy, these recent reports have shown that few increases have occurred.
In fact, between homeowners who were not accepted for a trial modification and homeowners who had their trial modification canceled, the totals that are given for these two sets of homeowners have been cumulative, meaning they are compiled through the month of April 2011 and the total for both categories of homeowners who filed bankruptcy only increased by one. Yet, homeowners must question whether this means that Citigroup is making more strides in the area of home loan modifications or if bankruptcy has simply not been the route that homeowners have chosen after being denied a modification.
There have been homeowners with a variety of servicers who may have simply faced foreclosure, who have turned to alternative modifications as a way to save a home or other foreclosure prevention plans, but there are also homeowners who have taken advantage of short sale or deed in lieu of foreclosure plans. Understandably, bankruptcy, foreclosure, and even short sales result in the loss of a home, which is something that the majority of homeowners wish to avoid even if factors like negative equity may be a problem, but there are not always solutions that homeowners may find for their predicament.
However, Citigroup, like other major financial institutions participating in HAMP, did see an increase in the number of permanent modifications that are currently active as of May of 2011, but some of the increases in servicer data have not been extravagant by any means and many believe that servicer efforts have begun to slow. Questioned as to whether homeowners are still looking for modifications or if the amount of homeowners who are in need has simply dwindled is one question which has arisen, but Treasury data does indicate that there are over 1 million homeowners who are reportedly delinquent on their mortgage payment and may qualify for home loan assistance.
Citigroup homeowners need to understand that the options available on a wide scale are not necessarily going to always be available for their particular situation and, in areas like state-specific mortgage assistance plans, servicers may not be participating in all areas of these programs. Yet, this is not something that is confined to Citigroup as there are a variety of the major banks who are offering mortgage assistance to homeowners through various routes, but as to what would be best for a particular homeowner and whether their servicer is using certain programs will all depend on a homeowner’s particular situation and will come down to exploring these options with an accredited housing counselor or a representative from their bank.