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I am posting this
announcement from our State Attorney General's
office. Launched this past June 30, the AG has pursued this case
aggressively and reached a speedy settlement that may in fact benefit
many of our clients who will be able to remain in their homes. If you
need more information, click on the AG Logo for a full text of the
settlement and a Q & A. (Article emphasis is mine)
General Brown Announces Landmark $8.68 Billion Settlement with
Attorney General Edmund G. Brown Jr. today
announced a landmark,
multi-state settlement with Countrywide Home Loans,
Countrywide Financial Corporation and Full Spectrum Lending that is
expected to provide up
to $8.68 billion of home loan and foreclosure relief nationally,
including $3.5 billion to California borrowers.
âWith this settlement, homeowners will receive direct relief
from the catastrophic damage caused by Countrywide,â said
Attorney General Brown. âCountrywideâs
lending practices turned the American dream into a nightmare for tens
of thousands of families by putting them into loans they
couldnât understand and ultimately couldnât
The Countrywide settlement will likely become the largest predatory lending
settlement in history, dwarfing the nationwide $484
million settlement with Household Finance Corporation in 2002, under
which California received approximately $91 million.
The settlement marks a swift resolution of the Attorney
Generalâs June 30, 2008 lawsuit alleging that Countrywide,
the nationâs largest mortgage lender prior to its July 2008
acquisition by Bank of America, deceived borrowers by misrepresenting
loan terms, loan payment increases, and borrowersâ ability to
In a nutshell, this settlement will enable eligible subprime and
pay-option mortgage borrowers to avoid foreclosure by
obtaining a modified and affordable loan. The loans covered by the
settlement are among the riskiest and highest defaulting loans at the
center of Americaâs foreclosure crisis. Assuming every
eligible borrower and investor participates, this loan modification
program will provide up to $3.5 billion to California borrowers as
of foreclosures for eligible borrowers with subprime and
pay-option adjustable rate loans pending determination of borrower
ability to afford loan modifications;
modifications valued at up to $3.4 billion worth of
reduced interest payments and, for certain borrowers, reduction of
their principal balances;
â¢ Waiver of
late fees of up to $33.6 million;
â¢ Waiver of
prepayment penalties of up to $25.6 million for borrowers
who receive modifications, pay off, or refinance their loans;
â¢ $27.9 million in payments to borrowers who are 120 or more
days delinquent or whose homes have already been foreclosed; and
â¢ Approximately $25.2 million in additional payments to
borrowers who, in the future, cannot afford monthly payments under the
loan modification program and lose their homes to foreclosure.
More specifically, the modification program covers subprime and
pay-option adjustable-rate mortgage loans in which the
borrowerâs first payment was due between January 1, 2004 and
December 31, 2007. The program will be available for loans in default
that are secured by owner-occupied property and serviced by Countrywide
Financial or one of its affiliates. In addition, the
borrowerâs loan balance must be 75% or more of the current
value of the home, and the borrower must be able to afford adjusted
monthly payments under the terms of the modification.
The terms of the modification will vary based on the type of loan,
â¢ âPay-option ARM loans,â in which loan
balances increase each month if a borrower makes only a minimum
payment. Borrowers may be eligible to have their principal reduced to
95% of their homeâs current value and may also qualify for an
interest-rate reduction or conversion to an interest-only payment.
â¢ Subprime adjustable-rate loans, such as 2/28 loans.
Borrowers may have their interest rate reduced to the initial rate. If
the borrower still cannot afford it, the borrower may be eligible for
further interest-rate reductions to as low as 3.5%.
â¢ Subprime fixed loans. Borrowers may be eligible for
â¢ âHope for Homeowners Program.â If they
qualify, some borrowers may be placed in loans made through this
â¢ Alt-A and prime loans. Borrowers who are in default, but
have Alt-A and prime loans, may also be considered for modifications,
depending on circumstances.
In addition to the settlementâs direct relief to borrowers, Bank of America,
who negotiated the settlement with the Attorney General following its
acquisition of Countrywide, has
agreed that it will suspend offering, under its own name or through
Countrywide, subprime loans or loans that can negatively amortize.
The bank has significantly restricted the circumstances under which it
will make so-called âno docâ or low-documentation
loans, in which borrowers do not fully document their ability to repay
In addition to California, attorneys general in 10 states,
including Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan,
North Carolina, Ohio, Texas and Washington, are participating in the
settlement. Attorney General Brownâs office, along with the
Office of the Illinois Attorney General, led the negotiations for the
states. The Countrywide parties to the settlement include parent
Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans and Full
Attorney General Brown added, âUnlike last weekâs
congressional bailout, this loan-modification program provides real
relief for borrowers at risk of losing their homes. Tragically,
California and the other states have had to step in because federal authorities
shamelessly failed to even minimally regulate mortgage
The settlement does not include Angelo Mozilo, the former Chairman and
Chief Executive of Countrywide Financial Corporation or David Sambol,
formerly the President of Countrywide Home Loans and the President and
Chief Operating Officer of Countrywide Financial Corporation. Brown
will continue to prosecute his case against Mozilo and Sambol.
Wunderlich - Selling Southwest California Homes including
Temecula, Murrieta & The Southern California Wine Country Â Â Â
Â Â Â Â Â Â
Â Â Â Â Â Â
Remember, Don't wait to buy real
estate - Buy real estate and wait.
' Help for Countrywide
Borrowers in Landmark Settlement'
OPINIONS IN THIS
COMMENTARY ARE STRICTLY GENE WUNDERLICH's PERSONAL OPINION. WHILE ANY
REASONABLE &/or RATIONAL PERSON SHOULD AGREE, THESE VIEWS MAY
REFLECT THOSE OF ACTIVERAIN, COLDWELL BANKER RESIDENTIAL BROKERAGE OR
ANY Â LOCAL, STATE OR NATIONAL ASSOCIATIONS.
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.