Help on the way for homeowners

February 11, 2008 7:23:32 PM PST
Some subprime borrowers could get their interest rate frozen or even reduced under a rescue partnership between Countryside Financial Corporation and ACORN.

100,000 subprime borrowers stand to benefit from interest rate modifications offered in a partnership between countrywide financial corporation and the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN).

The country's biggest mortgage lender said through this partnership, Countrywide and ACORN have agreed to a set of home retention standards to help borrowers who are in various situations of financial difficulty to establish suitable repayment plans.

That could include refinancing into fixed rate loans or 5 year extensions before interest rates kick up on some arms.

Counselors will work with homeowners who are delinquent with mortgage payments and those who worry about future rate resets.

"People who have come into divorce, death in family, military deployment, or those who have recently come into low income, they will also be given a five year freeze. It creates more space for people to find solutions so they don't have to leave their homes at the drop of a hat. It will lessen the demoralization that is occurring because of all the foreclosures, " says Vernell Crittendon , ACORN Richmond spokesperson

Streets in Richmond are filled with auction signs as are neighborhoods in Oakland.

"I'm glad that Countrywide has stepped up and come forward to work with ACORN and I would also like to see other lenders do the same as well as investors," Sean Rogan, Oakland Deputy Director Of Housing.

"I mean, we're really in trouble. If we would turn it around and fix it and have families live at the standard that they can live, that would be much better for the whole entire country," says Fannie Brown, ACORN Oakland spokesperson.