It has been quite a while since the historic $25 billion settlement between forty-nine states and some of America's largest banks has been a topic here. However, there are perhaps some of our South Florida readers familiar with the housing case that has reportedly helped many reduce the principal amount owed on their mortgage.
Of the $25 billion settlement reached in February, approximately $10.5 billion was to go to homeowners for mortgage relief. And, in a recent report, about one out of six homeowners who have benefited from these funds resides in Florida. The report from the Palm Beach Post stated that approximately 1,000 Florida homeowners have benefited from their mortgage balances being reduced by an average of $114,015. Although some of the funds have gone toward other means of helping homeowners, such as approving short sales and refinancing to reduce mortgage payments, this report continues a string of good news for the Florida housing market.
Borrowers who find themselves locking horns with a lender in an attempt to secure a mortgage loan modification should probably look into whether the funds from the $25 billion settlement could apply to their mortgage plan. There is a possibility that a particular mortgage may meet the qualifying criteria for a principal reduction, which would go a long ways toward preventing delinquent payments and the possibility of foreclosure.
As property values slowly rebound throughout the nation, our previous posts have mentioned time and time again how the Florida housing market, and South Florida in particular, seems to be bouncing back more quickly than other locales. Most of the real estate market headlines show the sun starting to finally come out on the Florida market. Hopefully, this trend will continue.
Source: The Palm Beach Post, "Average Florida mortgage reduction tops $114,000," Kimberly Miller, Sept. 10, 2012