Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Is HAMP Being Tossed in the Hamper?
Obama Administration to Mortgagers: "I'll meet you HAFA way."

While publicly maintaining (incredibly with straight faces) that the HAMP mortgage foreclosure avoidance program is a success, Obama housing officials are quietly moving resources to a new program, HAFA, the Home Affordable Foreclosures Alternatives Program. (I read that as HAFAP, which sounds a lot like "half ass" but that's just me.)

The HAFA program is designed to give borrowers (but more directly, lenders and investors) a soft landing by subsidizing short sales and deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure. According to this article at, the Obama Administrationis shifting focus away from the failed/failing/futile/fubar HAMP modification program to the HAFA "don't let the door hit you on the way out" program. HAFA provides for $1500 in "borrower relocation assistance" -- read that as "cash for keys", $1000 in administrative expense reimbursement to the servicer, and $1000 immediately and $3000 on resale to junior lien holders as an incentive to give up their lien. This assistance is provided to "HAMP-eligible" borrowers. In other words, as i read this, if you don't qualify for HAMP, you won't qualify for this either. Nevertheless this program could be exceedingly useful to the majority of HAMP-eligible borrowers who don't see the benefit in a permanent HAMP modification.

Now it's time for my marginally relevant video of the day. "I'll meet you halfway. That's better than no way. We've got to find some way to get it together."

While I'm on the subject of the Partridge Family, I couldn't resist including a video that's marginally relevant to the marginally relevant video. This one is a rare video clip of Sound Magazine, A Partridge Family tribute band that had an all too brief career in the late 1990s. If you're a Partridge Family tribute band, what do you use for your signature song? Naturally, you use Kiss's Shout it Out Loud.

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