We are now more than five years into one of the worst housing and foreclosure crises in American history, with millions of families still at serious risk of losing their homes. Since 2006, home prices in Connecticut have decreased by -29.55%.
Rosa supports initiatives to immediately help struggling families at risk of foreclosure and programs to incentivize homeownership. These programs will help restore home values and support the recovery of the housing market.
Help Struggling Families Avoid Foreclosure
Foreclosures rates are still at record levels, with over one in ten homeowners with a mortgage in foreclosure or at risk of falling into foreclosure. The recent National Mortgage Foreclosure Settlement provided many benefits for struggling homeowners, including $120 million for principal reduction and $36 million for refinancing programs for Connecticut borrowers who owe more than their homes are worth. The settlement, however, also eliminated the legal uncertainty for banks proceeding with foreclosures, which is causing foreclosures rates to increase this year. The settlement also required the five banks that are part of the agreement to follow new mortgage servicing standards, which will protect struggling homeowners and prevent future foreclosures.
These mortgage servicing standards need to be extended to all homeowners, which is what Rosa’s Regulation of Mortgage Serving Act would do. The legislation would protect all struggling homeowners by ensuring that eligible borrowers have access to loan modifications and other alternatives to foreclosure.
If you are having trouble with your home loans, please visit the Resources to Help Homeowners Avoid Foreclosure section of this website: RESOURCES TO HELP HOMEOWNERS AVOID FORECLOSURE
Protect Programs to Encourage Homeownership
Homeownership is not only critical to the formation of wealth for families, but also the foundation of safe and stable neighborhoods. Homeownership rates are currently at 15 year lows due to the housing and financial crises. Rosa believes we need to maintain existing incentives for homeowners and provide new ones to close the gap. Historically, the U.S. encouraged homeownership through tax incentives, including the mortgage interest deduction and property tax deduction. As Congress considers options to reform the tax code, Rosa believes these incentives to encourage homeownership need to be preserved.
Since the Federal Housing Administration was created in 1934, Congress has encouraged stability and affordability in the housing market through federally guaranteed mortgages. Due to housing and financial crisis, over 90% of new home mortgages underwritten 2011 were guaranteed by the federal government because private lenders and banks were unwilling to lend. Congresswoman DeLauro opposes efforts to reduce homebuyer access to federally secured mortgages.