The Treasury Department is offering a free online calculator that helps borrowers estimate whether or not they qualify for the Home Affordable Modification Program ( HAMP). The calculator is available at checkmynpv.com.
In the two years since its launch, HAMP has helped more than 270,000 borrowers receive permanent loan modification, thus lowering their monthly mortgage payments. That number falls far short, however, of the millions of homeowners at risk of foreclosure — which is bad for homeowners and bad for the housing market. The current glut of foreclosures — stalled by paperwork delays — poised to hit the market is already far more than can absorbed by first-time homebuyers, according to the research firm Campbell Surveys.
That is why HAMP is so important. Every homeowner who modifies a loan and stays in a distressed property adds one less property to an already flooded market.
What if You Don’t Qualify for HAMP?
If you do not qualify for HAMP, you may qualify for HAFA – the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives Program. Under this program, you can do a short sale on your home, but there are additional benefits to the Seller for being a part of HAFA. Under HAFA, the Seller will receive $3,000 in relocation assistance (in the form of a check at closing) and your lender will be forced to release any deficiency amount (the difference between what you owe on the loan versus what it ultimately sells for as a short sale). The government also recently relaxed the guidelines to get into HAFA a bit, so if you’ve applied previously, it may be time to re-apply!
If you are considering applying for the HAFA program, its important to use a Tampa Bay real estate agent with significant short sale experience. Fill out the form today if you would like more information about HAFA or HAMP.