Statewide more than 10,000 avoid foreclosure
A state-designed foreclosure prevention program made its 10,000th foreclosure prevention loan last month, providing workers who have lost jobs during the downturn a way to save their homes.
“We’re on target to help 21,000 homeowners by the end of 2014,” said A. Robert Kucab, executive director of the N.C. Housing Finance Agency that designed and manages the N.C. Foreclosure Prevention Fund. “This has been a huge effort—10,000 loans in 26 months. It was possible only because of the work of 40 HUD-approved counseling agencies all around the state.”
The N.C. Foreclosure Prevention Fund pays the mortgage for unemployed workers while they seek jobs or complete job training in a new field. The assistance is also available to homeowners who have suffered certain other hardships, while they look for work. It is funded by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Hardest Hit Fund®. to help with the economic recovery.
“So far, the Foreclosure Prevention Fund has kept $2.7 billion of property out of foreclosure statewide. It is helping stabilize property values and the local economy in 98 counties,” said the Housing Finance Agency’s Kucab.
There is no cost to homeowners for assistance, which is offered in two forms.
• A zero-interest, deferred loan of up to $36,000, paying mortgage and related costs for up to 36 months while the unemployed one seeks or retrains for a job. If the owner continues to live in the home for at least 10 years, the loan is considered satisfied and no repayment is required.
• A zero-interest loan to pay off a second mortgage. This can reduce the homeowner’s total monthly payment to an affordable level, and can help a homeowner who finds a new job, but at reduced income.
Homeowners do not need to be behind on their mortgage payments to apply. Eligible homeowners can apply for the N.C. Foreclosure Prevention Fund through 40 participating HUD-approved counseling agencies or can apply online at www.NCForeclosurePrevention.gov.
For more information, homeowners should call 1-888-623-8631, or go to www.NCForeclosurePrevention.gov.
Davidson County residents may see assistance from Davidson County Community Action, 15 E 2nd Ave, in Lexington. For more information, call 249-0234 or visit http://www.thedebtdoc.com/ .