Reports from the Treasury Department suggest that in 2011 the homeowner Unemployment Program—a part of the federal Making Home Affordable initiative—showed significant improvement. Namely, the report showed that between June and July of 2011, there were marked increases in the number of forbearance agreements offered to homeowners.
This year has also seen a lot of fundamental changes to the program, changes that make more opportunities available. Homeowners may now potentially find a plan in which they can forego mortgage payments entirely, in addition to existing offers that make reduced payments available.
Typical beneficiaries of the forbearance agreements offered by the Unemployment Program are those who cannot make a mortgage payment, or fail to qualify for a federal mortgage loan modification program because of base income requirements. The program is also open to those who are having trouble meeting even reduced payment obligations as determined by a prior mortgage modification.
While some of these individuals may seek the reduced payment options, the vast majority are simply aiming to benefit from the opportunity to receive a forbearance agreement on a mortgage payment over a period of 12 months or more.
Between June and July of 2011, the number of forbearance agreements conducted through the Unemployment Program of the Making Home Affordable initiative increased significantly, from 13,521 to 13,993. Plans that require some partial payment on the part of the borrower also increased, from 10,881 in June to 11,364 in July.