September 9th, 2009
11:33 AM ET
12 years ago

12 percent of borrowers helped by Obama plan

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="The Obama administration has come under fire for the program's rocky start."]

NEW YORK ( - Mortgage servicers have placed 12% of eligible troubled borrowers into trial modifications under President Obama's foreclosure prevention plan, the Treasury Department said Wednesday.

The progress report, the second issued by the government, says that 360,165 homeowners who were at least two months behind in payments received relief through August. A month ago, just 9%, or 235,247 borrowers, were in trial modifications.

The Obama administration has come under fire for the program's rocky start. Officials, who met with servicers in Washington in late July, said they are on track to hit their goal of 500,000 loan modifications under way by Nov. 1.

"Our progress in implementing these programs to date has been substantial, but we recognize that much more has to be done to help
homeowners," said Michael Barr, an assistant Treasury secretary, in prepared testimony before a House Financial Services Committee panel.

The $75 billion initiative was announced in February and the first institutions to join began accepting applications in April. The plan, which is
projected to help up to 4 million homeowners, calls for servicers to reduce the monthly payments of eligible borrowers to no more than 31% of their pre-tax income.

Some 47 servicers are participating in the Obama program, up from 38 servicers a month ago. Financial institutions, borrowers and mortgage investors all receive incentives for participating in the program.

By releasing the servicers' progress reports each month, the administration is hoping to hold institutions responsible for their performance. The updates will allow the public to see which institutions are lagging in implementing the plan.

After the August report came out, servicers acknowledged they needed to improve their performance and promised to do better in the future.

Borrowers are complaining that servicers are not responding to their calls and applications, losing their paperwork or not making decisions. The financial institutions said they are ramping up their staffing and computer systems to handle the crush of applications.

Moving quickly is important. The number of people falling behind on their payments continues to mount, especially as unemployment rises.

A record number of foreclosure filings were posted in July, according to RealtyTrac. There were more than 360,000 properties with foreclosure filings - including default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions - an increase of 7% from June and 32% from July 2008.

soundoff (78 Responses)
  1. cedgar

    The people that DID not factor the risk in purchasing a home, to
    put it very plain English are STUPID!
    EVERY person knows you have a minim of six months reserve
    of money to meet your obligation. Every one knows you read the
    contract BEFORE you sign. (if you gamble it is not my responsibility
    to bail you out)
    If you can not run your on budget that is not my problem!
    All the ones who did not factor the risk STOP WHINING, MAN UP,

    September 9, 2009 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  2. randy

    Obama voter=lazy, dont pay your bill dirtbags. Leave this country and go ruin another one. This country runs off hard work, not fat lazy uneducated ebonics speaking clowns. Sick of paying for you.

    September 9, 2009 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  3. Kirsty, ME

    President Obama,

    Your speech to the kids yesterday was excellent. Your speech to Americans today, will be the same. How do I know. Because most Americans stand behind you. Most Americans are with you.


    Don't give away the store, and we'll vote for you in four..... (years).

    September 9, 2009 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  4. Sam Sixpack

    According to the US Census Bureau, in 2007 there were a little over 50,000,000 mortgages in the US. Isn't it more accurate to say about 0.7% of "borrowers" were helped by this plan?

    September 9, 2009 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  5. Steve (the real one)

    Well, well, well! Liberals are now tossing out the "what would McCain do" excuses. Wake up! McCain is NOT the president so the "what would he do?" is a distraction from liberal failure! You own both houses of the Congress and the White House and STILL blaming Palin, Bush, and the GOP for your failures! Not very grown up!

    September 9, 2009 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  6. cedgar

    I have not had a job for over a year! I m so tried of people whining.
    We have always had our budget where if BOTH lost our jobs WE would
    still be able to meet our obligations. If you have made bad decisions
    that is not my problem that is yours I refuse to be made to pay for
    some one being STUPID and UNABLE to manage their money.

    September 9, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  7. Laura in KS

    First of all, oligarchy=political, socialism=economic. And I was being sarcastic, well, not really sarcastic, but def not advocating smaller government. The fewer people holding power, the scarier it is in my opinion. Which is why I don't particularly understand everyone screaming for smaller government–that only means that less people have influence over all the decisions being made. Now that's spooky...

    September 9, 2009 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  8. cedgar

    I forgot to state our income less than 110k before taxes as a couple.
    So stop WHINING an MAN UP

    September 9, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  9. Laura in KS

    Why does everyone assume that just because you got behind on your mortgage, you are automatically a deadbeat freeloader? That's an ignorant and closed-minded thing to think. Interestingly enough, those spouting off lines like this are usually the first ones to quote unemployment numbers and whine about the economy–HELLO!! People losing jobs=not having the $$ to pay the bills. It's not their fault if they lost their job due to sucky economy, and it's not their fault if the bank approved them for a sub-prime loan. So get your facts straight and think about what you're saying before you start spouting off nonsense and spreading the idiocy around.
    It must really suck to be filled with so much hate and loathing all the do you live like that?

    September 9, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  10. A Democrat of 51 years who has finally got smart to their follishness.

    Only 12%. Hmmmm!

    September 9, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  11. bess

    it's still welfare, a very expensive form of welfare. still using my tax dollars... and my children's tax dollars, and my grandchildren's tax dollars, and certainly my great-grandchildren's tax dollars.

    September 9, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  12. truthsayer

    Thats 12% more than 0...its clear that CNN carries water for the Republicans. The number of anti reform ads running on CNN today says it all.

    September 9, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  13. peggyledbetter

    Making Homes Affordable under the Obama Plan is a joke! The Cram Down Bill need to be passed to give homeowners relief from losing their homes. Chase Bank is playing the paper lost game...big liars...big liars! They are not helping people save their homes. Don't trust these bank their not cracked up to be what they are reporting to the media.

    September 9, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  14. JILL

    At least Presient Obama is helping some....left up to Republicans, nothing would be happening!!!

    September 9, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  15. southerncousin

    12%? Does this include the money that Obama and his merry thieves paid to ACORN or some self proclaimed communist "czar" he admires to administer the program. What a waste of money and effort. I am still out here, playing by the rules, working for the my money to turn over to these morons to waste and I am real tired of it. Dope smokers, get jobs and pay taxes.

    September 9, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  16. Ryan Indy

    I work in the Mortgage industry and people are not getting help from this plan. They have to jump thru hoop after hoop and this plan is not competent at the moment. Which should scare the heck out of people because the government also wants to take over the American Peoples healthcare and run that. Wake up people the Government is not good at alot of things even with The messiah himself running the show.

    September 9, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  17. Bea Patridge

    12% helped with 100% paying the bill!!!

    September 9, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  18. NH Independent

    Obama sucks.....

    September 9, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  19. Doug

    The plan could be far greater in success if you stop banker from picking the winners. People with a mortage should be automatically given an coupon so other banks can compete for their business. If the originator of the loan does not particpate their should be a fines and pass on to another lender who will assist the homeowners.

    September 9, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  20. Voice of Reason

    Wow. Just read the vitriol about the president here. Does anyone take a step back and realize that 360,000 families were able to stay in their home last month becuase of this guy?

    Let me say it again: Can anyone here say that tossing more than a quarter million families out into the street make sense? How can any one ever ever EVER think that is the road to recovery that this country needs?

    To those who say this is simply rewarding bad behavior with your tax dollars: You have a lot to learn about how the world works. Because if YOUR mortgage rate went up to something untenable, or if YOUR job was cut unexpectedly, or YOUR investment portfolio evapoorated throgh no fault of your own – i'm willing to bet you'd be playing a different tune.

    Here's a bit of common sense for you: The tax dollars you pay are the PRICE OF ADMISSION for living in a world where yes, even the irresponsible are cared for in some measure. Those are the facts. Adjust, or you are only part of the problem.

    September 9, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  21. Mississippi Mike

    He's basically giving money to people who would have qualified for a loan and been able to make the payments anyway. Banks are so tight with their mortgage funds that foreclosed people don't have a prayer of getting their hands on mortgage handouts.

    As far as troubled borrowers, they'll either lose the house now or later. Might as well stop the bleeding and let them get foreclosed on.

    September 9, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  22. lyn

    To the Managers and Producers of CNN and Political Ticker you are getting desperate every day in reporting the news, so now you dig up all stupid remarks of Sarah Palin for news, your network is getting more and more like Fox News. Yet you always report that your network is the world leader in bring the news. Is it all about ratings? Shame on you CNN.start bringing true and real news not gossip. Thanks

    September 9, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  23. the economy is getting better

    but we need more jobs, mr. pres, more jobs

    September 9, 2009 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  24. Nick - Arlington, VA

    Its ineffective because the senate killed the cram down legislation. This legislation would have incentivized banks to negotiate lower pay or else have a judge settle the matter without foreclosure.

    September 9, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  25. Carl Justus

    We are lucky we have a president with a heart instead of one own by the wall street bankers, the oil companies, the multi-national corporations and the military/industrial complex.

    September 9, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
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