The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the U.S. Department of Treasury, and the Ad Council have teamed up for a series of public service announcements (PSAs) in an effort to reach struggling homeowners and prevent foreclosures, HUD announced on Wednesday.
The PSAs are part of the Foreclosure Prevention Campaign and are meant to raise awareness of resources available through the Make Home Affordable (MHA) program for those at risk of foreclosure. MHA was created in 2009 in response to the housing crisis of 2008 with the goal of stabilizing the housing market by offering solutions to struggling homeowners, including lowering monthly mortgage payments. MHA's goal of assisting homeowners is part of a broader goal of improving the overall economy. Since it was formed five years ago, MHA has assisted more than 1.5 million families.
The MHA program has been extended until December 31, 2016, due to ongoing need; HUD estimates that almost one in every 17 homeowners is behind on his or her mortgage payments.
The new series of ads will be directed at homeowners who are current on their mortgage payments but struggling to stay afloat due to a hardship that may have placed a strain on their finances. HUD believes that many of these homeowners may not be aware of the MHA program, which may be able to offer them a solution.
“As the economy continues to heal from the Great Recession, many homeowners still struggle to make their mortgage payments,” Deputy Treasury Secretary Sarah Bloom Raskin said. “The good news is that help is still available. This new PSA campaign is our latest effort to raise awareness of the free government resources available through Making Home Affordable to assist struggling homeowners in avoiding foreclosure.”
The new ads will be available in both English and Spanish and will provide a toll-free number for interested homeowners to call for more information.
“Although the housing market and economy are making a steady recovery, many struggling homeowners would still benefit from the one-on-one counseling services a HUD-approved housing agency can provide them,” Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Commissioner Carol Galante said. “More than 1.5 million families have already benefited from the Making Home Affordable Program, and we hope this effort to educate homeowners will lead to many more families using these free services and getting the help they need to stay in their homes.”