Responding To ACORN, AHMSI Says It’s In HAMP

Written by John Clapp
on July 14, 2009 No Comments
Categories : From The Orb

an Home Mortgage Servicing Inc. (AHMSI) has responded to ACORN's accusations that the Texas-based servicer is a holdout from the federal Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP). ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis released a [link=http://www.mortgageorb.com/e107_plugins/content/content_lt.php?content.3863][u]statement[/u][/link] Friday criticizing the Treasury for naming Wilbur Ross' W.L. Ross & Co. as a fund manager for the department's $30 billion Public-Private Investment Program, because Ross' AHMSI company had not yet signed on for HAMP. AHMSI spokesperson Christine Sullivan tells MortgageOrb that the company's management has been working for months with Fannie Mae and the Treasury Department on joining HAMP, and that the goal had finally been reached. According to AHMSI's statement, the company "share[s] President Obama's goal of helping struggling homeowners who want to stay in their homes. Since his announcement of the program in early March, we have had a dedicated team of associates working out implementation details. They have been addressing the changes to our computer systems, workflows, training and processes – all necessary steps to implementing the guidelines smoothly for our borrowers." As of July 10, the Treasury's most recent transaction report, which lists HAMP contracts, did not include AHMSI. A phone call to Fannie Mae to confirm the contract's status was not immediately returned. Sullivan says AHMSI will soon formally release a statement regarding details of the HAMP contract. AHMSI adds that it has had success with its loan modification program that has been in place since the company's founding in April 2008. The service has completed more than 64,000 modifications during the 12 months ending June 2009, and about 37,000 of those modifications were performed this year. In 86% of AHMSI modifications, borrowers experienced a payment reduction, with the average reduction being $544, or 30.5%. An ironic twist applies to the conversation surrounding AHMSI's participation in HAMP. Servicers involved with the federal program are expected to determine not just a borrower's HAMP eligibility, but also whether a borrower qualifies for the legislatively revamped Hope for Homeowners (H4H) program, which features a shared-appreciation component. Ross, speaking as a keynote speaker at an industry summit held in June 2008 (before H4H became effective), [link=http://www.mortgageorb.com/e107_plugins/content/content.php?content.1968][u]suggested[/u][/link] a similar shared-appreciation theme. "It could be motivation for the homeowner to continue making payments, because they'd at least get half the upside," Ross said at the time. "And it would give the lender opportunity to claw back some or all of the amount by which the loan is compromi

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