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FHFA Demonstrates Progress Toward Goal of Keeping At-Risk Families in Homes

foreclosure-helpThe Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) demonstrated its progress toward the goal of helping distressed and at-risk families remain in their homes in the April 2015 Foreclosure Prevention Report released this week.

More than half of the nearly 3.5 million foreclosure prevention actions completed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac since the start of the conservatorships in September 2008 were permanent loan modifications, according to FHFA. The GSEs completed 1,806,623 permanent loan mods from September 2008 up to the last day of April, including the 14,585 they completed during that month.

"The Enterprises have completed nearly 3.5 million foreclosure prevention actions since the start of the conservatorships in September 2008," an FHFA spokesperson said. "The numbers are good and we will continue to work with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to develop new strategies and tools to help borrowers avoid foreclosure and help stabilize neighborhoods."

In fact, nearly 19,000 of the 22,000-plus foreclosure prevention actions the GSEs completed in April were home retention actions that included permanent loan mods, repayment plans, forbearance plans, and charge-offs in-lieu.

According to FHFA, the share of extend-term only permanent loan mods in April held steady at 48 percent, due to increasing house prices and a decline in the population eligible for the government's Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP). As of the end of April, there were 412,084 active permanent HAMP mods, down slightly from March's total of 413,566. Modifications with principal forbearance comprised 19 percent of the total number of permanent loan mods during the month.

The number of home forfeiture actions completed by the GSEs in April (3,447), which included short sales and deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure, represented a slight increase from March's total of 3,130. The serious delinquency rate continued to decline down from 1.76 percent at the end of March to 1.70 percent at the end of April, according to FHFA. The number of 60-plus days delinquent loans backed by the GSEs dropped from 585,156 in March down to 569,432 in April, while foreclosure starts also declined during the same period (from 22,721 down to 19,500).

In all, the GSEs completed 22,346 foreclosure prevention actions in April, lifting to total to 3,499,689 since the conservatorships began nearly seven years ago.

Click here to see the FHFA's entire April 2015 Foreclosure Prevention Report.

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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