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Report: Freddie Mac Has Helped 1.1 Million Homeowners Avoid Foreclosure Since 2009

Freddie Mac Foreclosure AlternativesFreddie Mac has helped nearly 1.1 million struggling homeowners either retain their homes or otherwise avoid foreclosure through a variety of means since the beginning of 2009, four months after the FHFA conservatorship began, according to the GSE's 2014 Financial Results Summary released on Thursday.

That number includes the 120,000 homeowners Freddie Mac helped avoid foreclosure during 2014 through either loan modifications, repayment plans, forbearance agreements, or short sales/deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure transactions. It was the lowest total for any full year since the conservatorship began (the previous low was 133,000 in 2009; the high was 275,000 in 2010 at the height of the foreclosure crisis).

Loan modifications were the most popular foreclosure alternative for homeowners in 2014 with loans backed by Freddie Mac, as they have historically been. Of the 120,000 homeowners Freddie Mac helped avoid foreclosure in 2014, more than half of them (67,000) did so through a loan modification. About 21 percent (25,000) avoided foreclosure with a repayment plan, and about 8 percent (9,000) were able to stay in their homes through forbearance agreements. The total number of homeowners helped through those three loss mitigation methods in 2014 was 101,000, meaning about 84 percent of the 120,000 homeowners Freddie Mac helped avoid foreclosure were able to stay in their homes.

About 16 percent, or 19,000, were helped through short sales or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure transactions in 2014, according to Freddie Mac.

"When foreclosure is unavoidable, Freddie Mac has helped to further stabilize communities by focusing its real estate owned home sales on owner-occupants, who have made up two–thirds of its purchasers since the beginning of 2009, and by promoting industry-leading standards for property preservation," the Enterprise said in the report.

The percentages for 2014 line up with Freddie Mac's historical data since 2009: out of the approximately 1.1 million homeowners Freddie Mac has helped avoid foreclosure through loss mitigation since January 1, 2009, about 53 percent of them (564,000) received loan modifications; 17 percent (185,000) stayed in their homes through repayment plans; 10 percent (104,000) entered in to forbearance agreements; and 21 percent (220,000) agreed to a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure transaction.

Freddie Mac has helped more than 14 million families buy, rent, or keep their homes since the beginning of 2009. The Enterprise has provided $2.5 trillion in liquidity to the mortgage market during that period.

About Author: Brian Honea

Brian Honea's writing and editing career spans nearly two decades across many forms of media. He served as sports editor for two suburban newspaper chains in the DFW area and has freelanced for such publications as the Yahoo! Contributor Network, Dallas Home Improvement magazine, and the Dallas Morning News. He has written four non-fiction sports books, the latest of which, The Life of Coach Chuck Curtis, was published by the TCU Press in December 2014. A lifelong Texan, Brian received his master's degree from Amberton University in Garland.

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