Housing Fix: Minority Group Unveils $1.2 Billion Industry-Led Program

The National Association of Real Estate Brokers, Inc. (NAREB) announced the launch of a 25-city, $1.2 billion REO and foreclosure mitigation initiative called the Homeowner’s Assurance Program (HAP).

The program is designed to address the devastating effects of foreclosures on communities across America. HAP is a non-governmental, industry-led solution to the nation’s housing crisis.

NAREB was formed in 1947 by African American real estate professionals and is the oldest minority trade group in the United States. The organization has a vast network of industry professionals including: Realtists, brokers, sales agents, appraisers, mortgage brokers, and loan officers as well as practical experts in pre- and post-counseling, loss mitigation, foreclosure, property management, housing construction, and development.

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Banks Paying Homeowners to Avoid Foreclosure

Banks, accelerating efforts to move troubled mortgages off their books, are offering as much as $35,000 or more in cash to delinquent homeowners to sell their properties for less than they owe.

Lenders have routinely delayed or blocked such transactions, known as short sales, in which they accept less from a buyer than the seller’s outstanding loan. Now banks have decided the deals are faster and less costly than foreclosures, which have slowed in response to regulatory probes of abusive practices. Banks are nudging potential sellers by pre-approving deals, streamlining the closing process, forgoing their right to pursue unpaid debt and in some cases providing large cash incentives, said Bill Fricke, senior credit officer for Moody’s Investors Service in New York.

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