Foreclosure Crisis

How Banks and Government Fail Homeowners

Systemic failures at the country's banks and mortgage servicers have exacerbated the most severe foreclosure crisis since the Great Depression, making it extremely difficult for struggling homeowners to win a loan modification. Government efforts to limit the damage have fallen woefully short.

Video: The Great American Foreclosure Song

Looking to get a handle on the foreclosure crisis, the loan modification fiasco, and the robo-signing scandal? We put it all in a music video.

Lack of Competition Stifles Refinance Program for Underwater Homeowners

A new report says borrowers who want to refinance mortgages under the government’s expanded Home Affordable Refinancing Program, or HARP, may not be getting the lowest rates because there’s little incentive for big banks to compete for business.

Breaking Down the Mortgage Settlement: How Far Does $26 Billion Go?

How much will homeowners be helped by the settlement? We do the numbers.

Four Whistleblowers Who Sounded the Alarm on Banks' Mortgage Shenanigans

Whistleblower suits settled as part of the government's $25 billion settlement offer a glimpse at the kinds of behavior that ran rampant in big banks' mortgage operations.

What Do Republican Presidential Candidates Say on Foreclosure Crisis? Not Much.

Our guide to how the candidates say they would approach the housing crisis — when they speak about it at all.

Homeowners Who Negotiate Debt Relief Could Soon Face Massive Tax Bill

If Congress doesn't renew a key 2007 law, people who get a principal reduction on their mortgages or short-sell their homes could be forced to pay taxes on their "gain."

The Best, Most Revealing Reporting on the Foreclosure Crisis

The housing crisis in the U.S. has been going on nearly five years, with still regular revelations about misdeeds by banks and others. Here’s our roundup of standout reporting on the crisis.

How Citibank Dumped Lousy Mortgages on the Government

A lawsuit, which Citibank just settled for $158 million, reveals how the bank pushed risky loans onto the government's books.

Obama Housing Plans vs. Reality

Will anything come of the Obama administration’s plan for homeowners?

Will Mortgage Settlement Avoid Repeating Obama’s Foreclosure Failures?

Yesterday's mortgage settlement aims to avoid the pitfalls of the administration's floundering foreclosure program, but enforcement is again a question.

Why Millions Won't Get Help From Big Mortgage Settlement

Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae's opposition to principal reductions on mortgages means about half of homeowners in the U.S. couldn't qualify for the most significant help from banks' settlement today with states.

Underwater Homeowners May Swim Freely

Pundits argue that when homeowners owe more on their house than it's worth, they find it hard to move to find jobs. One economist challenges the very foundation of their claim.

Still Waiting for Cleanup in Foreclosure Mess

If last year was the year in which faulty foreclosures and bank errors became a full-blown scandal, this has been the year of waiting for something to be done about it.

Foreclosure Crisis: The Story So Far

Flaws Jeopardize New Attempt to Help Homeowners

The Independent Foreclosure Review seeks to compensate homeowners victimized by big banks, but key elements remain undecided, unclear or secret, while lawmakers and homeowner advocates have criticized some of the known features.

Our FAQ on The National Foreclosure Settlement and Independent Foreclosure Review

Regulators have provided a bare-bones website and frequently asked questions about the foreclosure reviews. But we thought things could be even clearer for readers, so we are providing this FAQ.

Surprise on Refi Revamp: Key Regulator Agrees to Major Program Reforms

Federal Housing Finance Agency chief Edward DeMarco had blocked earlier efforts to help struggling homeowners, but now he’s signed onto a major change to encourage banks to refinance underwater mortgages.

Our Guide to Obama’s Floundering Foreclosure Programs

The Obama administration's efforts to address the foreclosure crisis have resulted in struggling programs, recycled ideas and little chance of significant improvement.

Secret Docs Show Foreclosure Watchdog Doesn’t Bark or Bite

Documents obtained by ProPublica suggest the government coddled mortgage servicers in its flagship foreclosure prevention program despite frequent and serious errors.

One Obstacle to Obama's New Plan to Help Homeowners: A Gov't Regulator

Obama wants to help hurting homeowners refinance into cheaper loans, but that hasn’t gone well so far, and efforts to fix it might be stymied.

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