An article published in South Florida’s Sun Sentinel today states that soon mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are considering forcing loan servicers in Florida to go to mediation with troubled homeowners before a foreclosure can even start. This program is being considered for high intensity foreclosure areas such as Miami and Tampa. In fact, it was announced a few weeks ago that Clearwater based technology firm eMason is providing mortgage mediation tracking and management for Fannie Mae in most parts of Florida under a new contract with the government-sponsored enterprise.
The Clearwater, based company said Tuesday that its technology platform, Clarifire, was fully implemented by Fannie Mae and made available to about 400 servicers in its initial rollout Dec. 13, 2010.
In December 2009, the Florida Supreme Court mandated all foreclosure cases in the state that involve residential property be referred to mediation — a face-to-face meeting with a counselor to discuss alternatives to foreclosure.
Personally in dealing with the many short sales that I do, I have not been told by any of my Sellers that they’ve been contacted by the banks for mediation. Hopefully once they get the kinks out of this program, it will be successful and help to decrease the number of foreclosure in Florida. For those currently in foreclosure who wish to mediate to try to get a loan modification – it may be worth trying to demand a mediation of your lender! As always, we advise homeowners in foreclosure to speak to a real estate attorney about your legal rights as it pertains to this issue. More on Foreclosure Mediation in Florida here.