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A Fresh Start with Making Home Affordable5A Fresh Start with Making Home Affordable2015-08-10T04:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassE56610CAE61340CFA08C0DAC4814BC8D"><p>​Welcome to the new Making Home Affordable (MHA) blog! We’ve redesigned the look of with a new layout, including this blog, and easier navigation, so homeowners like you can find the information you need to get mortgage help. </p><p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/Blog%20Post1_Fresh%20Start%20Image.jpg.jpeg" alt="" style="margin:5px;" /> <br> </p><p> Tell us what you think about the new look of Are you able to find the information you need?  What other topics would you like to hear about in this blog? Please share your thoughts with us on our Twitter and Facebook pages. </p><p> In 2015, MHA marked its sixth anniversary of providing affordable and sustainable solutions for America’s homeowners – that includes helping more than 1.5 million families avoid foreclosure.</p><p>Help is still available!  MHA offers options for homeowners who have fallen behind on their mortgage or are struggling to stay current.  As we approach the application deadline of December 31, 2016, it’s more important than ever to reach out if you are having a tough time paying your mortgage. Take control of the financial challenges that could affect your ability to stay in the home you love, and consider applying for assistance through the MHA Program. </p><p> <strong>If a financial hardship has left you struggling to pay your mortgage</strong>, the <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-hamp.aspx">Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP)</a> could provide the financial breathing room you need with a modified mortgage payment. Homeowners nationwide save nearly $500 per month on their mortgage. </p><p> <strong>If you have a second lien on your home</strong>, you could qualify for additional assistance with the <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-2mp.aspx">Second Lien Modification Program (2MP)</a>. Homeowners in 2MP save nearly $763 a month when combined with their monthly HAMP savings.<br><br><strong>If you lost your job and are unable to make your mortgage payment</strong>, the <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-up.aspx">Home Affordable Unemployment Program (UP)</a> allows you to postpone your mortgage payments for up to one year while you seek new employment. </p><p> <strong>If staying in your home is no longer an option</strong>, the <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-hafa.aspx">Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives Program (HAFA)</a> provides a  streamlined short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure (DIL)  process and provides $10,000 to assist with relocation expenses, making the transition that much easier. </p><p> If you’re ready for a fresh start, your first step is to reach out to 888-995-HOPE to speak with a free housing expert. HUD-approved counseling agencies are available 24/7, 365 days a year and provide assistance in over 170 different languages. Let MHA help. </p></div>
Comience de nuevo con Making Home Affordable2Comience de nuevo con Making Home Affordable2015-08-17T04:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClass540F0B847DD44D93B0EB371066DCC90C"><p>¡Bienvenidos al nuevo blog de Making Home Affordable (MHA)! Hemos rediseñado nuestro sitio web con un nuevo esquema incluyendo un área para los medios sociales y con navegación más fácil, para que los propietarios de vivienda como usted puedan encontrar más rápido la información que necesitan para obtener ayuda hipotecaria. </p><p>Déjenos saber qué piensa de nuestro nuevo sitio web. ¿Puede encontrar la información que necesita? ¿Qué otros tópicos de interés le gustaría ver publicados en este blog? Por favor comparta sus ideas con nosotros en nuestro Twitter o Facebook.</p><p>En 2015, MHA marcó su sexto aniversario proveyendo soluciones económicas y sostenibles para los propietarios de viviendas en toda la nación – incluyendo ayuda a más de un millón y medio de familias a evitar la ejecución hipotecaria. </p><p>¡Todavia hay ayuda disponible! MHA ofrece opciones para propietarios de viviendas que se han retrasado en sus pagos hipotecarios o que están teniendo problemas para pagar.  A medida que se aproxima la fecha límite para presentar solicitudes del 31 de diciembre de 2016, es más importante que nunca pedir ayuda si está teniendo problemas para pagar su hipoteca. Tome el control de las dificultades financieras que podrían afectar su habilidad de permanecer en el hogar que tanto quiere y considere aplicar para obtener asistencia por medio del programa MHA.</p><p><strong>Si una dificultad financiera le está causando problemas para pagar la hipoteca,</strong> el programa de Modificación Home Affordable (HAMP) podría proporcionarle el alivio financiero que necesita, por medio de un pago hipotecario modificado.  Propietarios de viviendas en toda la nación ahorran un promedio de $500 al mes en su hipoteca.</p><p><strong>Si tiene una hipoteca de segundo grado en su propiedad</strong>, podría calificar para asistencia adicional bajo el programa de Modificación de Hipotecas en Segundo Grado (2MP). Propietarios de viviendas en el programa 2MP ahorran un promedio de $763 al mes, cuando es combinado con los ahorros que obtienen mediante HAMP.</p><p><strong>Si ha perdido su trabajo y no puede pagar su hipoteca</strong>, el programa de Desempleo Home Affordable (UP) pospone los pagos hipotecarios hasta por un año mientras busca empleo. </p><p><strong>Si quedarse en su casa ya no es una opción</strong>, el programa Alternativas a la Ejecución Hipotecaria (HAFA) ayuda a agilizar el proceso de una venta corta (short sale) o una escritura en lugar de la ejecución hipotecaria (DIL) y provee $10,000 en asistencia para mudarse, haciendo así un poco más fácil la transición.  </p><p>Si está listo para comenzar de nuevo, su primer paso es llamar al 888-995-HOPE (4673) para hablar gratis con un experto en viviendas. Agencias de asesoría en viviendas aprobadas por HUD están disponibles las 24/7, los 365 días del año para ayudarle en 170 idiomas. Deje que MHA lo ayude.<br></p></div>
Should you pay for this “help”? Don’t even think about it 6Should you pay for this “help”? Don’t even think about it Barbara Floyd Jones2015-08-21T04:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClass727315F2A24045DC9FA1E3C5672D4B74"><p>​Have you gotten a call asking if you need help with your mortgage? Have you typed “mortgage help” during an online search and found companies offering mortgage relief? The commercials with promises to reduce your mortgage or stop foreclosure are exactly what you want to hear, right? Yet these companies or individuals usually have one thing in common. They request payment to work with your mortgage company to reduce your mortgage or stop a foreclosure. Should you pay for this help? Don’t even think about it. </p><p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/NWA_Blog_August2015.jpeg" alt="" style="margin:5px;" /> </p><p> <br>In addition to a promise for help, if these companies offer a money-back guarantee or a monthly payment plan to pay for services, it’s probably a scam. Unless your mortgage company has offered a loan modification or other mortgage relief in writing, you verified the offer is from your mortgage company and you have already accepted the written offer, it is illegal for a company to request payment for mortgage help. Even attorneys have restrictions regarding payment for services related to mortgage relief.</p><p> <br>But you really need help – like yesterday. What can you do? NeighborWorks America and the U.S Department of the Treasury wants you to know these five steps to get the mortgage help you need and protect yourself from a scam. </p><p> <br> </p><ol><li> <strong>Contact your mortgage company and ask for the Loss Mitigation department.</strong><br>Call the phone number on your mortgage statement to find out about your options. <br> <br></li><li> <strong>Call the Homeowner's HOPE™ Hotline at 888-995-HOPE (4673) for free help.</strong><br>The Hotline provides free, comprehensive foreclosure assistance and housing counseling services around-the-clock. They can also help differentiate legitimate mortgage relief from what may be a scam.<br><br></li><li> <strong>Do not pay any money BEFORE approval by your mortgage company</strong>. <br>It is illegal to be asked to pay before a written offer from your mortgage company. Verify mortgage company correspondence by calling the number on your mortgage statement. <br> <br></li><li> <strong>Avoid promises or guarantees to get your loan modified or stop a foreclosure</strong>. <br>A “money-back guarantee” is unnecessary because advance fees are illegal. <br> <br></li><li> <strong>Avoid companies that tell you to stop paying your mortgage or send payments anywhere besides your mortgage company</strong>.  <br>They may tell you to stop communicating with your mortgage company. These are signs of a scam.</li></ol><p> <br>To learn more signs and to report a scam, visit NeighborWorks America’s Loan Modification Scam Alert website at <a href=""></a>. For more information about NeighborWorks America, visit <a href=""></a>.<br><br><em>Barbara Floyd Jones is a Senior Program Manager for NeighborWorks America</em><br></p></div>
Making Home Affordable Five Years Later7Making Home Affordable Five Years LaterMark McArdle2015-08-28T04:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClass85842811A0BC484B88DDD03B7C89C349"><p>​Since the<a href=""> launch of Making Home Affordable</a> (MHA) in 2009, Treasury has worked diligently to help homeowners at risk of foreclosure, and stabilize the nation’s housing market.</p><p>So far, nearly two million mortgage assistance actions have been provided under MHA to offer relief to struggling homeowners. Treasury’s programs have also changed the way the industry interacts with its struggling borrowers. Many private sector modifications now look a lot like HAMP modifications, with over four million homeowners in private sector modifications benefiting from the framework of the HAMP program.</p><p>To date, there have been more than 1.3 million permanent mortgage modifications obtained by homeowners through MHA’s Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP). Homeowners in HAMP save a median of approximately $544 on their mortgage payments each month, reducing their monthly payments by about a third. This meaningful payment reduction makes HAMP a more affordable and sustainable solution than many other programs in the marketplace today.</p><p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/MHA-5-Year-414X300px.jpeg" alt="" style="margin:5px;" /> <br> </p><p>Over the last five years, MHA programs have continued to evolve, in response to changing conditions and the needs of the nation’s struggling homeowners. <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-up.aspx">The Home Affordable Unemployment Program</a> (UP) provides temporary relief to unemployed homeowners while they look for another job. Those needing to transition to more affordable housing can access short sales or deeds in-lieu-of foreclosure through our <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-hafa.aspx">Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives</a> (HAFA) program. And, underwater homeowners have received more than $13 billion in principal reduction through HAMP’s Principal Reduction Alternative (PRA) program. </p><p>Program changes and enhancements –from the assignment of a Single Point of Contact to the application of a standard modification protocol – have all helped and protected struggling homeowners.  Most recently, Treasury required the largest servicers in HAMP to offer financial counseling to homeowners who have received modifications under HAMP to help them stay current on their mortgage payments.</p><p>From launching three national Public Service Advertising campaigns to hosting more than 90 “Help for Homeowners” events, we have looked for ways to raise awareness of MHA and provide homeowners with the information and guidance they need to get in -- and stay in -- the program. The Homeowner’s HOPETM Hotline (888-995-HOPE), where homeowners can learn if they are eligible for MHA and receive free advice from HUD-approved housing counselors, is always just a phone call away. Not only is this MHA resource available 24 hours a day, but homeowners can get assistance in more than 170 different languages.</p><p>While the economy is showing signs of recovery, there are still many families in need of mortgage assistance. Given the continuing need to help these homeowners, <a href="">MHA has been extended until December 2016</a>. We will keep working to ensure that homeowners who need help know where to go to get it. We’ve worked hard these past five years to help stabilize the housing market, but recognize there are still homeowners who need help. Understanding that need, we will continue our strong efforts beyond our five year anniversary to help educate homeowners about the program and the options available to them.  </p><p> <em>Mark McArdle is the Chief of the Homeownership Preservation Office at the United States Department of the Treasury.</em><br></p></div>
HAMP May Cut Your Monthly Mortgage Bill by $50010HAMP May Cut Your Monthly Mortgage Bill by $500Maya Newman2015-10-05T04:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassC1D75BA0907642A481AF3C371AE493C9"><p>​Imagine you are on your bi-weekly run to the local grocery store. You’re standing in line--cart full of ingredients for Sunday dinner, toiletries, cleaning supplies, and healthy snacks for your kids. You get to the register and the cashier gives you the grand total.  You realize that you are going to have to put more than a few items back on the shelves to stay within your budget. Between your monthly mortgage payment and other household bills, you don’t have enough money left to buy every item in your cart. </p><p></p><p>This unfortunate scenario plays out across communities all over the United States.  And, while the economy is improving overall, there are still many homeowners who are still in financial hot water. This is where mortgage assistance initiatives, like the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP®), may be able to help. In 2009, the Obama Administration rolled out a series of programs including HAMP to help struggling homeowners avoid foreclosure. Homeowners in permanent HAMP modifications have saved approximately $500 each month on their mortgage payments. That’s no small amount! </p><p>For some families, $500 means the difference between being able to pay their mortgage and stay in their home, or lose it through foreclosure. It may also mean not having to choose between basic necessities such as adequate groceries for the family, reliable transportation, or proper heating and cooling for the home. Over the next few weeks, we’ll explore what saving nearly $500 per month means for the average U.S. homeowner and how mortgage savings can help homeowners better afford their other living expenses. </p><p>This week our focus is food. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s <a href="" target="_blank">Cost of Food Report</a> for May 2015, the average U.S. homeowner can purchase three weeks’ worth of food for a family of four, with children aged 2-5 years old, for $498.60. Families without children could pay for up to one month of food for $496.30. And, if you are a single male or female between the ages of 19-50, you could buy two months’ worth of groceries for $483.20 and $419.00, respectively. Imagine the security of knowing you could feed your family for almost a month with your mortgage payment savings. And with the cost of groceries rising each year – <a href="" target="_blank">every dollar counts</a>! <br> <br> <img class="img-responsive" src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/500%20series_grocery.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;" /> <br> <br>Making Home Affordable wants to help you realize the mortgage savings you may be eligible for.  If you or someone you know is struggling to make ends meet because of mortgage payments, we may be able to help. Call us at 888-995-HOPE™ today.  Housing experts are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, in over 170 languages <strong style="text-decoration:underline;">at no cost to you</strong>. </p><p> <em>Maya Newman is Spokesperson for the MHA Program.</em></p></div>
Don’t Choose Between Paying Your Mortgage and Keeping the Lights On11Don’t Choose Between Paying Your Mortgage and Keeping the Lights OnMaya Newman2015-10-26T04:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassE2B8AF79F22E40AAAA9CBFA1FF80E04A"><p>​Imagine this: It’s a Wednesday night and you are sitting at the kitchen table helping the kids complete their homework.  The 6:00pm news buzzing in the background tells you it’s going to be a beautiful day tomorrow.  Suddenly, you’re sitting in the dark.  The lights are off, the TV is silent, and you hear the air conditioner shut down. While everyone else in the house is surprised by the disruption in their weeknight routine, you knew it was coming, you just didn’t know when. The “payment overdue” notices have been steadily hitting the mailbox as well as your email inbox.  A reduction in your household income and an increase in other monthly bills meant making the tough choice of ignoring the electric bill in order to pay your mortgage. You held out hope that if you just waited one more month, you’d be able to pay at least half that electric bill -- just enough to keep things going for a little while longer. </p><p> <br>Helping homeowners experiencing a reduction in household income is one of the reasons that the Home Affordable Modification ProgramSM (HAMP®) was created in 2009. Homeowners who struggle to pay the bills each month can apply for a loan modification to reduce their monthly mortgage payment. Since 2009, homeowners in permanent HAMP modifications have saved approximately <strong>$500 each month</strong> on their mortgage payments, even more in some areas of the country. </p><p> <br>As we continue to explore ways in which saving nearly $500 every month could help alleviate the strain of managing monthly expenses, this week we are focusing on the cost of utilities, including electricity, gas, water and sewer. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ <a href="" target="_blank">Consumer Expenditures Midyear Update</a>, the average monthly costs for utilities, fuel and public services total $3,860 each year per household, or roughly $321 per month. </p><p> <br> <img class="img-responsive" src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/500%20series_utilities.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;" /> <br> </p><p>Saving nearly $500 per month means you are less likely to miss paying the gas/electricity bill on time. You’ve got peace of mind knowing that your home will be properly heated during the harsh winter months, and will remain a cool refuge during the hot and sticky days of summer.  </p><p> <br>Making Home Affordable wants to help you realize the mortgage savings you may be eligible for.  If you or someone you know is struggling to make ends meet because of the mortgage, we may be able to help. Call us at 888-995-HOPE today.  Housing experts are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, in over 170 languages. </p><p> <br>Check out these savings tips from America Saves under the “Home Heating and Cooling” section of their <a href="" target="_blank">54 Ways to Save Money</a>.</p><p> <br> <em>Maya Newman is Spokesperson for the MHA Program.</em></p></div>
Stuck in Financial Gridlock? Saving Nearly $500 on Your Mortgage Helps Make for a Smoother Ride12Stuck in Financial Gridlock? Saving Nearly $500 on Your Mortgage Helps Make for a Smoother RideMaya Newman2015-11-02T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClass0DB66FB6F4B1468094893E6D5FBD3F49"><p>​Imagine this: You’ve been sitting in traffic for about 15 minutes on the highway when your engine light comes on. You don’t pay too much attention because it’s done that before without incident. But this time, the engine starts to smoke and you have to pull over, where your car dies on the spot.  You know the car should have been serviced a few thousand miles ago, but you just haven’t had the cash to take it to the shop.</p><p>Unfortunately, for many Americans, the cost of properly maintaining a car has become a luxury that is no longer affordable because they are struggling to pay their mortgage. And when forced to choose between transportation and housing, the latter often wins out. The Home Affordable Modification Program<sup>SM</sup> (HAMP®) was created to help make it easier for homeowners who have experienced a financial hardship to balance their mortgage with other expenses. Homeowners who struggle to pay the bills every month and have experienced a financial hardship such as an increase in medical bills, divorce, or a reduction in household income, may be eligible for a loan modification that could lower their monthly mortgage payment by approximately $500 each month.</p><p>As we continue to explore ways in which saving nearly $500 every month on the mortgage could help alleviate the strain of managing other monthly expenses, this week, we’re highlighting transportation costs. According to the <a href="">Bureau of Labor Statistics 2013 Consumer Expenditure Survey</a>, the average monthly expense for gasoline is $218, and the average monthly public transportation expense is $45.</p> <br> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/Transportation.jpg.jpeg" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:400px;" /> <p>Saving nearly $500 on your mortgage each month can help you afford to keep gas in your tank and properly maintain your car. If you live in an urban area, the savings could help ensure that you have the transit fare to make it to your medical appointment, go to church, visit friends and family, or make it on time to that all-important job interview—the one that could change your life. </p><p> Making Home Affordable wants to help you realize the mortgage savings you may be eligible for. If you or someone you know is struggling to make ends meet because of the mortgage, we might be able to help. Call us at 888-995-HOPE<sup>TM</sup> today.  Housing experts are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, in over 170 languages. </p><p> <em>Maya Newman is Spokesperson for the MHA Program.</em></p></div>
Meet Thomas13Meet Thomas2015-11-06T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClass708B8F4C50064F1A845CBE97567AC32D"><p>​Your home is not just a place where you store your belongings or hang your hat at the end of each day. Home is a place where you can cultivate your dreams, make precious memories, and enjoy time with family and friends. Your home is an important part of you. </p><p>When Thomas from Southern Illinois first bought his home, he felt he had achieved a real milestone in his life. He was starting to accrue wealth and believed he had a place that he could pour himself into. But in 2007, he was unexpectedly laid off from his job. The recession had begun and he worried how he could continue making his mortgage payments to keep from losing everything he had worked so hard to attain. Thomas made a lot of changes to his lifestyle to try and make his new financial situation work, but he knew that it was not going to be enough. There came a point where he knew he needed help, and Thomas turned to the Making Home Affordable program to help him save his home. </p><p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/Thomas_FB_Quote1.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:378px;" /> </p><p>Making Home Affordable (MHA) is a free government resource that can help make your mortgage payments more affordable. Too learn more, visit to learn how you can <a href="/steps/Pages/step-1-identify-situation.aspx">identify your situation</a>, <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-all-programs.aspx"> explore program options</a>, <a href="/steps/Pages/step-3-prepare.aspx"> prepare what you will need</a> to move forward and <a href="/steps/Pages/step-4-apply.aspx">apply </a> for the right solution based on your individual circumstance. Help from MHA can provide flexibility that you might not have otherwise.  </p><p>If, like Thomas, you have found yourself in a difficult financial situation, there is help available. The sooner you apply, the sooner you can save. Visit <a href=""></a> or call 888-995-HOPE today to see if Making Home Affordable can help. <br>Watch and listen to <a href="">Thomas’s story</a> and share his story with someone you know in need of mortgage help.  </p></div>
Meet Nadine and Jerry 14Meet Nadine and Jerry 2015-11-07T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassDFF8C75F8C034F5787492D0DC49BF48C"><p> Purchasing a home can be one of the most fulfilling experiences in the world. For many of us, building a life with loved ones, making memories, and transforming four walls and a roof to a place of refuge is what home is all about. So what happens when there is a threat of losing that place of refuge where so many happy memories were made? For one south Florida couple this threat became all too real until they sought help and found the Making Home Affordable (MHA) program. </p><p>Nadine and Jerry’s story is full of love, kindness, and a lifetime of memories. Their home in south Florida is their sanctuary and, with their family living far away, their neighbors have become family. But, when Jerry lost his job of 24 years with only two weeks’ notice, the threat of losing their home and having to move away from the family they had built in their community became a real possibility. Jerry and Nadine quickly realized they could no longer afford the monthly mortgage payments and needed to find help before the home they had worked so hard for was lost. Thankfully, with help from the Making Home Affordable program, Nadine and Jerry were able to find the mortgage solution that was right for them. Their only regret, was not asking for advice and help sooner. </p><p><span id="part1"><span><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/Nadine_FB_Quote1.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:378px;" /></span></span></p><p>Making Home Affordable (MHA) is a free government resource that can help make your mortgage payments more affordable. Too learn more, visit to learn how you can <a href="/steps/Pages/step-1-identify-situation.aspx">identify your situation</a>, <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-all-programs.aspx"> explore program options</a>, <a href="/steps/Pages/step-3-prepare.aspx"> prepare what you will need</a> to move forward and <a href="/steps/Pages/step-4-apply.aspx">apply </a> for the right solution based on your individual circumstance. Help from MHA can provide flexibility that you might not have otherwise.  </p><p>If you have found yourself in a difficult financial situation similar to Jerry and Nadine’s, there is help available. Visit <a href="/Pages/Default.aspx"></a> or call 888-995-HOPE today to see if Making Home Affordable can help. </p><p>Watch and listen to <a href="">Nadine and Jerry’s story</a> and share their story with someone you know in need of mortgage help. </p></div>
Meet Maxine15Meet Maxine2015-11-09T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassEC3A1BDF47E440D9B5DE5B0F943B845A"><p> Anyone who has ever watched The Wizard of Oz knows that Dorothy’s journey will teach her that there’s no place like home. Home is where many of our lives’ most important memories are formed, where family and friends gather, and where we enjoy a sense of safety and comfort. For many of us, our homes are the single biggest investment that we will ever make, and one that should not be at risk due to circumstances beyond our control. </p><p> For Maxine, a homeowner from Akron, Ohio who has lived in her home for more than 20 years, a perfect afternoon is spent hanging out at her house with her grandkids and pets. Her home is filled with love and memories, and she couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. But, in the blink of an eye, she found herself at risk of losing it all. Maxine had become ill and was unable to work and could no longer afford her mortgage payments. She was on the verge of losing not just her house, but her animals, and the place where her family gathered, celebrated, and created important memories. She was devastated, but she hoped that there might be something or someone out there who could help her save her home. Maxine discovered the Making Home Affordable program online and was able to find the right mortgage solution for her individual circumstance. </p><p> <span id="part1"><span><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/Maxine_FB_Quote1.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:378px;" /></span></span> </p><p>Making Home Affordable (MHA) is a free government resource that can help make your mortgage payments more affordable. Too learn more, visit to learn how you can <a href="/steps/Pages/step-1-identify-situation.aspx">identify your situation</a>, <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-all-programs.aspx"> explore program options</a>, <a href="/steps/Pages/step-3-prepare.aspx"> prepare what you will need</a> to move forward and <a href="/steps/Pages/step-4-apply.aspx">apply </a> for the right solution based on your individual circumstance. Help from MHA can provide flexibility that you might not have otherwise.  </p><p>If you are at risk of losing your home, there is help available. The sooner you apply, the sooner you can save. Visit <a href="/Pages/Default.aspx"></a> or call 888-995-HOPE today to see if Making Home Affordable can help. </p> <p>Watch and listen to <a href="">Maxine’s story</a> and share their story with someone you know in need of mortgage help. </p></div>
Mortgage Help for Those Who Serve Our Country16Mortgage Help for Those Who Serve Our CountryMaya Newman2015-11-11T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassD8613639C4C448DD8479B7A6FEF88D70"><p> Making Home Affordable (MHA) honors the service and sacrifice of U.S. military members and their families and recognizes some of the unique homeownership challenges that service members face while on active duty. </p><p>In addition to the more common hardships (death, divorce, disability) that can cause financial strain for homeowners, those who serve, or have served our country sometimes face unique challenges that make it difficult to keep up with the monthly mortgage payment. One unique challenge military homeowners face is a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) order, requiring relocation to a new city, state or even country in a relatively short period of time. Although the military provides relocation assistance in connection with PCS orders, finding a tenant to rent the current home or listing the property for sale, while paying rent or a mortgage payment on a new home, can put service members and their families at financial risk. <br></p><p><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/FB2_Military%20Blog.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;" /> </p><p>Another unique challenge for service members and their families is the transition from military service to civilian employment. Military members may have a difficult time finding new employment and adjusting to civilian life, making it even more difficult to afford their mortgage payment. </p><p>If you are in the military and are worried about the cost of maintaining two households after PCS orders, are having difficulty selling one of your properties, or are trying to improve your financial situation on your current home, <a href="/get-answers/pages/get-answers-how-military-resources.aspx">MHA programs could provide the solutions you are seeking</a>. We’ve helped more than 1.5 million families obtain a mortgage payment that is right for them. Find out if you’re eligible for one of our programs and learn how we can help you by calling 888-995-HOPE. </p><p>P.S. Remember, real mortgage help is free! Scam artists are skilled at knowing exactly how to exploit the financial challenges of military families. You should never be asked for any fees upfront for mortgage assistance. For more information about how to avoid scams targeting service members, visit the <a href="">Military Consumer</a> website to access resources from more than 30 federal, state and municipal agencies, consumer advocacy, and military support organizations. </p><p><em>Maya Newman is Spokesperson for the MHA Program. </em></p></div>
Seven Reasons to be Thankful this Season17Seven Reasons to be Thankful this SeasonMaya Newman2015-11-19T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassB575B35334F24DA0BDD325733E165921"> <p>​​​​​​With Thanksgiving season in full swing, many of us are now busy making plans for how we will celebrate the holiday. From coordinating travel arrangements and dinner menus, to the last-minute preparation for family coming into town, the holiday scramble can leave little time to reflect on the reason for the season. </p><p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/Thankful-S5.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:548px;" /> </p><p>We encourage you to take a few moments to appreciate your reasons to be thankful, and in the meantime, we’d like to share seven things we at MHA are thankful for: </p><p>1) <strong>A community of partners who continuously spread the word about MHA programs.</strong> If it weren’t for <a href="">housing counselors</a>, real estate agents, community leaders and other trusted advisors who educate themselves on MHA programs and stay connected to us through social media, events, online trainings, and email, we could not have reached homeowners who needed mortgage help the most. </p><p> 2) <strong>HAMP’s footprint on the mortgage industry.</strong> We’re proud and humbled that the HAMP modification process has been <a href="">adopted by many private financial institutions</a>, shifting focus from foreclosures to truly researching all available options to keep homeowners in their homes. </p><p> 3) <strong>Volunteers who pay it forward.</strong> As we look back on the more than 90 MHA-sponsored “Help for Homeowners” events, we appreciate the help from local volunteers who sacrificed their time and energy to ensure that the homeowners were treated with respect and received answers to their most pressing questions. </p><p> 4) <strong>Foreclosure prevention events across the country.</strong> We’re grateful for the many non-profit organizations and mortgage lenders who continue to host mortgage assistance events across the country—reaching homeowners in their own communities, and in many cases, providing face-to-face mortgage help on the spot. </p><p> 5) <strong>Friends and family who support homeowners through the process.</strong> Many homeowners secretly struggle to pay their mortgage and are too ashamed to tell anyone. We are grateful to the friend or family member that encouraged them to reach out for expert help and advice. </p><p> 6) <strong>Free financial / housing counseling.</strong> Financial education is a key component to housing stability. Since 2014, servicers participating in HAMP have helped nearly 19,000 homeowners start financial counseling, and we’re grateful that more HAMP participants have remained in their homes as a result. </p><p> 7) <strong>Homeowners who never give up and try again.</strong> Being denied for a modification can feel like a crushing defeat. We appreciate and applaud those homeowners who did not let a previous HAMP denial stop them from applying for HAMP again, under our new eligibility requirements. In some cases, we were able to modify their mortgages the second time around, giving them a renewed sense of stability and hope. </p><p> Do you need a renewed sense of stability and hope this season? If you, or someone you know are struggling with the mortgage payment, we can help. Give us a call at 888-995-HOPE. </p><p> Happy Thanksgiving! </p> </div>
Five Ways to Prepare for HAMP Interest Rate Increases 18Five Ways to Prepare for HAMP Interest Rate Increases Maya Newman2015-12-16T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassFC4300BA99A54BB5BDECCD95272FB2F3"><p>​​​With the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) well into its sixth year, you may have heard discussions around the interest rate increases most homeowners will experience after their fifth year in a HAMP permanent modification. </p><p> If homeowners received a HAMP modification between 2009 and 2011, they will likely experience three to four interest rate increases. If they received a modification between 2012 and 2013, they will likely experience two increases. After all increases have occurred, most homeowners will have a final interest rate at or below five percent, considerably better than their interest rate before HAMP. </p><p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/HAMP-step-up-s5.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;" /> </p><p> If you’re a concerned homeowner worried about how future payment changes will affect your family, no need to fret! Since 2014, approximately 200,000 HAMP homeowners have experienced an interest rate increase, and so far, the increase has not negatively impacted most homeowners’ ability to stay current on their payments. </p><p> Here’s a list of five things you can do to prepare for upcoming interest rate increases that may affect your mortgage payment: </p><blockquote><p> 1)<strong> Be On the Lookout for Communications from Your Mortgage Company.</strong> Your mortgage company is required to contact you twice with advance notice of your first interest rate increase—first, at least 120-240 calendar days, and then 60-75 calendar days before the first increase. </p><p> 2) <strong>Call Your Mortgage Company With Questions Regarding Your Rate Increase.</strong>Your mortgage company can provide answers to your questions, based on your specific circumstances. </p><p> 3)<strong> Call The Homeowner’s Hope Hotline™ at 888-995-HOPE. </strong> Speak directly with a HUD-approved housing counselor who is ready to assist you with questions you may have, for FREE. </p><p> 4) <strong>Take Advantage of Free Financial Counseling Offered to HAMP Homeowners in a Permanent Modification.</strong>These counseling services were put in place to assist homeowners stay current on their mortgage payments. To date, 19,000 homeowners have started counseling – why not join them and strengthen your financial knowledge? </p><p> 5) <strong>Start Setting Aside About $95/Month to See How Your New Interest Rate Could Affect Your Budget.</strong>The median monthly payment increases $94 with the first interest rate increase. Not only would setting aside the funds help you get used to a higher payment, but you’ll create a reserve that you can use to help cover the new payments or other expenses. </p></blockquote><p> For the details on your particular modification, refer to your written modification agreement and watch for notices from your mortgage company. If you still have questions, call 888-995-HOPE to speak with a housing expert. They’re available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in 170 languages.</p></div>
Five Reasons to Call the Homeowner’s HOPE™ Hotline (888-995-HOPE™)19Five Reasons to Call the Homeowner’s HOPE™ Hotline (888-995-HOPE™)Christopher Dove2016-01-20T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassC79E7A69D137446DAADF3A45E3BDE045"><p> <strong></strong>Whether you’re experiencing mortgage trouble now, know of a friend or family member having difficulty, or believe you have been a victim of a mortgage scam, the Homeowner’s HOPE Hotline is here for you. </p><p>Millions of homeowners have called and have received free help from the staff at the HOPE Hotline since the Making Home Affordable (MHA) program was established in early 2009. If you are having trouble keeping up with your mortgage payments, here’s why calling 888-995-HOPE (4673) can be the first step to you getting the help you need: </p><p>1) <strong>YOU CAN TRUST THE HOTLINE.</strong> When you call the HOPE Hotline you are getting FREE help from a government-sponsored resource that you can trust. Don’t fall for the fraudsters who claim they can help you lower your mortgage payments for a “small fee.” The HOPE Hotline has dedicated experts trained to help you, and can report a mortgage scam on your behalf. </p><p>2) <strong>YOU CAN CALL AT ANY TIME.</strong> If your mortgage troubles are keeping you up at night, or you need to speak with someone over the weekend, there is a housing expert available to you, any time—24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. </p><p>3) <strong>YOU CAN SPEAK WITH SOMEONE IN ALMOST ANY LANGUAGE.</strong> Housing and financial issues are complex. If English is not your first language, having a conversation over the phone might seem intimidating, if not frustrating. That’s why the HOPE Hotline offers help in more than 170 languages. </p><p>4) <strong>YOU WILL SPEAK WITH TRAINED PROFESSIONALS. </strong>The HOPE Hotline connects you with an expert from a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)-approved counseling agency who can assess your situation and get you started on the right path. They can even locate a counseling agency in your area to make an in-person appointment. There’s no need to feel embarrassed or ashamed of your current situation—the only goal is to help you out of your financial difficulty. </p><p>5)<strong> YOUR CALL WILL BE ANSWERED QUICKLY.</strong> The HOPE Hotline has taken nearly 5 million calls since 2009. In addition, more than 90 percent of calls to the HOPE Hotline are answered in less than 30 seconds. </p><p>No matter your mortgage situation, the HOPE Hotline is always available to provide you the guidance you need on the options available to you. Call 888-995-HOPE (4673) today. </p><p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/Call_Center_Image-Opt-2.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:1315px;" /> </p><p> <em>Christopher Dove is Director of Operations for the MHA program. </em></p></div>
Making Home Affordable in 2016: 5 Tips for Homeowners20Making Home Affordable in 2016: 5 Tips for HomeownersDanielle Johnson-Kutch2016-03-08T05:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClass03176EEBC1F7498DA56EDADEB2DD881C"><p>​​​​​​​​​We’re already three months into 2016, the final year of the Making Home Affordable (MHA) program. While we have made great progress in the last seven years, helping more than 1.8 million families avoid foreclosure, we know our work isn’t done quite yet. </p><p>We want struggling homeowners to act now and apply for help while MHA is still available. Although mortgage help may be available through your servicer after MHA’s deadline of December 31, 2016, why wait until then and lose out on the great incentives MHA offers? Incentives such as up to <a href="/already/Pages/already-mha-earn-incentives.aspx">$10,000 in principal reduction </a>just for making your mortgage payments in full and on time. </p><p> MHA established best practices that have been widely adopted by the mortgage industry – on everything from how to reach out to struggling homeowners, which includes providing them a single point of contact at their mortgage company, to best practices in achieving deeper payment reduction for homeowners through the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP). </p><p>As we embark on 2016, it’s important that we apply what we’ve learned to help as many homeowners as possible before the end of the year. Here are some lesson’s we’ve learned over the last seven years that homeowners seeking help should keep in mind. </p><p><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/MHA_2016_Blog_img.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:400px;height:483px;" /> </p><ul><li><strong>The sooner homeowners reach out for help, the more potential options they may have.</strong> That’s why it’s critical for people who are worried about their monthly mortgage payment to call their mortgage company or call the Homeowner’s HOPE™ Hotline (888-995-HOPE™) as early as possible. You don’t have to be behind on your mortgage to reach out for help. Did you know the HOPE Hotline is available in more than 170 different languages, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? </li><li><strong>Many struggling homeowners find speaking with housing counselors extremely helpful.</strong> Homeowners calling the HOPE Hotline can connect with a trustworthy housing expert from a HUD-approved counseling agency. And homeowners in HAMP have access to counseling, at no cost to the homeowner, to help them stay current on their mortgage payments. </li><li><strong>Stay organized and get all your documents together before submitting an application.</strong> Applications with incomplete docs take longer to be evaluated as mortgage companies must then request additional paperwork from the homeowner, which can prolong the process. Working with a housing counselor to submit an application, may help with completing a full package and getting a timely modification approval from the servicer.</li><li><strong>Don’t give up on getting mortgage help.</strong> At times the process may seem frustrating, but don’t let that get in the way of getting the help you need. It’s important that homeowners work with their mortgage company and follow-up on action items submitted to the servicer.</li><li><strong>Even if you don’t qualify for MHA, other help may be available.</strong> Many mortgage companies have their own programs to help struggling homeowners. In addition, some states offer assistance through the Hardest Hit Fund. </li></ul><p>With these tips in mind, if you’re struggling to make your payments and ready to start saving nearly $500 a month on your mortgage, don’t wait. Take action today and call 888-995-HOPE to speak with a housing expert about overcoming your mortgage troubles. </p><p><em>Danielle Johnson-Kutch is Acting Chief of the Homeownership Preservation Office.</em></p></div>
Back to the Basics: The ABC's of MHA21Back to the Basics: The ABC's of MHAMaya Newman2016-03-25T04:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClassFA600CE362284120B572B882CC4F7D4D"><p>It is hard to believe that the Making Home Affordable (MHA) program has been around for nearly seven years. Since 2009, we've added new programs, enhanced incentives and created more streamlined processes—keeping our mission to serve struggling homeowners seeking a more affordable mortgage payment. With so much information out there about MHA, we thought it would be helpful to provide some key information, by sharing the <strong>ABCs of MHA</strong>. They are a combination of items and resources our programs offer, facts about MHA, and actions that you, as a homeowner, can take to get mortgage help. Ready? Here we go! </p><p> <strong>A –</strong> When you're in mortgage trouble, the best thing you can do is take <strong>ACTION</strong>! Whether that means contacting your mortgage company, <a href="/get-answers/pages/get-answers-how-to-find-housing-counselor.aspx">finding a housing counselor</a>, or searching online for credible resources, don't stay stuck where you are. </p><p> <strong>B – </strong>Subscribe to receive updates from the MHA <strong>BLOG</strong>. Yes, this blog! All of our latest updates can be delivered right to your email <a href="">inbox</a> so you'll never miss a thing.</p><p> <strong>C – CALL </strong>the Homeowner's HOPE™ Hotline (888-995-HOPE™). MHA representatives can point you in the right direction and are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.</p><p> <strong>D – DATA </strong>confirms HAMP has helped homeowners save a total of $41 billion in mortgage payments since 2009. </p><p> <strong>E – EXPLORE </strong> <a href="/steps/pages/step-2-all-programs.aspx">your options</a>. MHA offers several different programs, from forbearance to refinancing, to modifying your mortgage, all designed to help homeowners who need mortgage assistance. </p><p> <strong>F – </strong>Access<strong> FREE </strong>financial counseling, which is available to all homeowners with a HAMP permanent modification. Participating mortgage companies have referred nearly 370,000 homeowners to financial counseling through December 2015. </p><p> <strong>G – </strong>MHA is a <strong>GOVERNMENT </strong>resource you can trust. You never have to pay for assistance. Remember, real help is <span style="text-decoration:underline;">free</span>.</p><p> <strong>H – </strong>The <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-hhf.aspx"> <strong>HARDEST HIT FUND</strong><strong>(HHF)</strong></a><strong> </strong>helps stabilize distressed housing markets in 18 states and the District of Columbia. $9.6 billion has been allocated to HHF since 2010. <br></p><p> <strong>I – </strong>MHA provides financial <strong>INCENTIVES </strong>to help you get back on track. Up to $10,000 in reduced principal with a <a href="/already/pages/already-mha-earn-incentives.aspx">HAMP modification</a>, and $10,000 for relocation assistance with a <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-hafa.aspx">HAFA short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure</a>. </p><p> <strong>J – JOIN</strong> the MHA <a href="/Pages/social-hub.aspx">social media community</a> on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Each day we offer news, tips, and shareable information for our followers.</p><p> <strong>K - KNOW </strong>the <a href="/get-answers/pages/get-answers-how-avoid-scams.aspx">red flags</a> to be on the lookout to avoid loan modification scams. <strong> </strong></p><p> <strong>L – </strong>The Homeowner's HOPE Hotline offers assistance in 170 different <strong>LANGUAGES</strong>. That means that even if English isn't your first language, we've got you covered.</p><p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/ABCs_of_MHA.jpg.jpeg" alt="" style="margin:5px;" /> </p><p> <strong>M – </strong>Homeowners with a permanent HAMP modification enjoy an average of nearly $500 in <strong>MONTHLY </strong>mortgage payment<strong> </strong>savings. </p><p> <strong>N – </strong>MHA programs are not confined to only select states. Help is available <strong>NATIONWIDE</strong> – in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. </p><p> <strong>O – </strong>We spread the word about numerous foreclosure prevention <strong>OUTREACH</strong> events across the mortgage industry to our followers on Facebook and Twitter using #KeepYourHome.   </p><p> <strong>P – </strong>When ready to apply for help from MHA programs, <strong>PREPARE </strong>your documents in advance for a smoother application process. We've put together a <a href="/steps/pages/step-3-prepare.aspx">list of required documentation</a>, as well as items you may need when speaking with your mortgage company. </p><p> <strong>Q –</strong> Your <strong>QUESTIONS</strong> are important to us. We’re available to answer them 24/7/365 at the HOPE Hotline AND we have a list of <a href="/get-answers/Pages/get-answers-learning-FAQs.aspx">FAQs</a> available online.</p><p> <strong>R –</strong> Take advantage of the online <strong>RESOURCES</strong> available to you through, <a href="" target="_blank"> </a>and <a href=""></a>. </p><p> <strong>S –</strong> Often times, you’ll see the term <strong>SERVICER</strong> used, that’s just another way of saying mortgage company and is someone who works on behalf of the lender, collecting mortgage payments, communicating with homeowners, etc.</p><p> <strong>T –</strong> All HAMP modifications go through a three-month <strong>TRIAL PERIOD PLAN</strong>. This gives you time to demonstrate your ability to make on-time payments at the new monthly payment amount.</p><p> <strong>U –</strong> <strong>UNEMPLOYED</strong> homeowners who struggle with their mortgage can temporarily suspend mortgage payments for 12 months while searching for a new job through our <a href="/steps/Pages/step-2-program-up.aspx">Unemployment Program (UP)</a>. </p><p> <strong>V –</strong> Watch <strong>VIDEOS</strong> of real homeowners sharing their testimonies of how HAMP helped save their homes on <a href="" target="_blank">MHA’s YouTube channel</a>. </p><p> <strong>W </strong> <strong>–</strong><strong> WORKING</strong> with a HUD-approved counseling agency can help you identify free mortgage assistance options that may fit your situation.</p><p> <strong>X –</strong> When submitting documentation to your mortgage company, <strong>XEROX</strong> can be your friend! Keep good records and make copies of all of your paperwork. </p><p> <strong>Y –</strong> MHA programs have helped change the lives of millions of homeowners for nearly seven <strong>YEARS</strong>. 2016 is our last year, so don’t wait to get the help you need. </p><p> <strong>Z –</strong> Remember, MHA programs cost <strong>ZERO</strong> dollars and homeowners should know they should never have to pay for mortgage help. If you think you have been a victim of a scam, call us today at 888-995-HOPE. There’s someone standing by, right now.</p></div>
Traveling with MHA9Traveling with MHAAaron Ferguson2015-09-11T04:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClass5C43A8795EF14E529B50ECEA3218CCC6"><p>​The Making Home Affordable Outreach Team has had a pretty busy summer. From conferences such as AARP, Essence Festival, NCLR, Urban League to TD Jakes Megafest and the Tom Joyner Family Reunion, we’ve been all around helping to spread the word about MHA and all the help they offer. </p><p> This isn’t something new; we’ve been attending events around the country spreading the word about mortgage help for the last six years, hitting housing industry and community events to let homeowners know about the life-changing benefits of MHA programs. </p><p> Since 2009, we’ve visited more than 40 cities, and interacted with tens of thousands of housing counselors, real estate professionals, and homeowners. We have passed out thousands of materials about MHA and other housing assistance programs at partner events—both large and small—for attendees of all backgrounds to share with friends, coworkers, family members, and others who could greatly use the help MHA offers. We’ve spoken with hundreds of the most dedicated housing counselors and real estate agents, passionate about educating members in their communities on how to best navigate MHA programs. </p> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/blog-images/map_images_blog.png" alt="" style="margin:5px;" /> <p> What we love most are the countless homeowners we’ve had the opportunity to speak with, who have shared their personal stories of MHA providing peace of mind and stability through affordable mortgage payments. </p><p> A great example of this occurred not long ago at the 2015 ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans. A teacher spotted the MHA booth from across the convention floor and immediately rushed over to our table. </p><p> “I love what this program did for me!” she said. “I got a HAMP [Home Affordable Modification Program] modification back in 2010—I can’t believe it’s been five years already—and just last week, I received a letter from my mortgage company saying that because I’ve paid on time all these years, I would be receiving an <a href="/already/Pages/already-mha-earn-incentives.aspx">extra $5,000 off my mortgage balance</a>. Fingers crossed!” with a smile so big, she lit up the entire conference center. </p><p>Another instance was speaking with a homeowner at the National Council of La Raza in Kansas City, MO. After mentioning the struggle he had keeping up with the monthly mortgage and new medical bills, he was able to speak one-on-one with a housing counselor about his mortgage troubles at our MHA pavilion. When he stood up and walked over at the end of his consultation, you could see it in his eyes that he was relieved. “I’m so grateful for a program like this. You’ve helped me tremendously. I can go home and sleep peacefully for the first time in a very long time.” </p><p> Stories like these are what make the work we do with MHA so rewarding. It’s also the reason our team works tirelessly speaking about MHA, passing out brochures, and attending as many events as we can. We wake up each day hoping to hear more of these stories in-person, from homeowners like you—the mothers, fathers, grandparents, teachers, pastors, community leaders, and many others.  As we move closer to the deadline to submit an application for assistance through MHA programs (December 31, 2016), we hope we have the chance to hear your story. </p><p> If you are interested in learning more about which events MHA will be attending, be sure you are following us on <a href="">Facebook </a>and <a href="">Twitter</a>. We’re always looking for ways to reach more homeowners through local and national events. Do you have any suggestions on upcoming community events MHA should attend? Do you need MHA materials at your event? Let us know via <a href="">Facebook</a> or <a href="">Twitter</a>. </p></div>

Last Updated: 1/29/2016 11:39