As we have seen different results in terms of delinquencies within the federal Making Home Affordable Program, from one servicer to another, some servicers like J.P. Morgan Chase have seen decreases in their number of delinquent borrowers, according to the most recent Treasury Department reports. This is potentially a good sign as this information released here in October has shown that between the months of June and July fewer homeowners were behind on their mortgage to a point where they may require foreclosure prevention assistance from the federal home loan modification initiative.
While there are some servicers who are seeing different results in this area, meaning there were some increases in the number of homeowner delinquencies seen by certain banks, Chase saw a decrease from 163,514 homeowners who were delinquent in the month of June to 159,928 in the month of July. Obviously, delinquency has been one area of concern for not only homeowners but housing officials as well due to the fact that a modified mortgage payment agreement is not always going to guarantee that a homeowner can sustain these payments for the long run, which is counterproductive in terms of helping these homeowners avoid foreclosure as it may require multiple tries at the modification program or alternative plans to be used before a solution is found.
Because of the fact that there are still delinquency issues both before and after the home loan modification program is offered to homeowners, services like J.P. Morgan Chase do offer opportunities for homeowners to participate in extension programs and in some states there are specific housing assistance plans that may be of some use but homeowners are still being encouraged to look at their personal financial life to make sure that they are doing all they can to avoid defaulting once again.
When homeowners with servicers like Chase miss payments even after a modification is offered this usually is a sign that financial distress is either still in place or a mortgage payment is beyond the means of a homeowner to make, and it could also indicate that if further assistance is pursued it could take more time and be more of a strain on the finances of these homeowners. For this reason, homeowners may be able to consult with housing or credit counseling agencies to not only explore opportunities for more affordability but potentially review their personal financial habits to see if there are areas of waste that could be eliminated or improvements made in some way.
While it is good news that Chase and other servicers have seen decreases in the number of delinquent homeowners, there are still problems that remain and these modification programs have not been perfect, so homeowners must make sure that they are well-versed in the opportunities available to help them avoid the loss of their home but are also in a position where if a reduced payment plan is given they are managing their money in such a way that allows them to benefit in the long run from these payment reductions.