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.

Nevada Wallops Bank of America With Sweeping Suit; Nationwide Foreclosure Settlement in Peril

By vastly expanding its suit against Bank of America to include all major stages of the bank's mortgage practices, Nevada signals that the banks' mortgage troubles will likely continue to dog them.

Billions Meant for Struggling Homeowners May Pay Down Deficit Instead

An estimated $30 billion from the bailout that was slated to help homeowners is likely to be used to pay down the debt.

Internal Doc Reveals GMAC Filed False Document in Bid to Foreclose

An internal document obtained by ProPublica shows that when one of the nation's largest mortgage servicers sought to foreclose on a homeowner last year and lacked a crucial document, they just made one up. The case appears to be part of a larger pattern of deceptive filings to foreclose on homeowners.

FDIC Chairwoman: Mortgage Industry 'Didn't Think Borrowers Were Worth Helping'

As she steps down, regulator Sheila Bair criticizes the industry's warped incentives, "disdain for borrowers" and the Treasury's prioritization of banks over homeowners.

Bank Errors Continue to Cause Wrongful Foreclosures

Banks continue to blindside homeowners by foreclosing when the homeowners are still awaiting word on their application for a mortgage modification.

Better Late Than Never? Gov’t Finally Penalizes Major Banks for Mortgage Mod Failures

After two years of arguing that it had little power to punish banks for breaking the rules of its mortgage modification program, the administration has decided it’s finally time to crack down. But the punishment won’t do much damage to banks that count their profits in the billions.

Profiles: Shoddy Bank Practices Continue Even After Mortgage Mods

Many homeowners have received a mortgage modification only to find themselves once again at risk of foreclosure because of errors by their mortgage company. ProPublica investigated six of these cases.

Even After Mortgage Modification, Shoddy Bank Practices Hurt Homeowners

Many homeowners have been granted a hard-fought mortgage modification only to have their mortgage company effectively pull a bait and switch.

In Fine Print, Banks Require Struggling Homeowners to Waive Rights

Some banks and others who handle mortgages have been forcing homeowners into a corner: You want a chance at saving your home? Then you’ll have to waive your right to sue.

As Regulators and Banks Review Foreclosures, We’ll Be Watching

As regulators launch an unprecedented plan to compensate victims of wrongful foreclosures, ProPublica will be watching closely.

Amidst Foreclosure Crisis, Proposed Budget Would Slash Housing Counseling

The recent budget deal struck between Republicans and Democrats would slash funding for housing counseling, a move that advocates say would force counseling agencies to lay off staff amid the foreclosure crisis.

Homeowner Wins Reprieve After ProPublica Story

OneWest is postponing the foreclosure of a homeowner we reported on yesterday.

Lawsuit Reveals How a Middleman Is Blocking Mortgage Modifications for Homeowners

The suit is a window into a broken system where even though the actual investors, when asked, say they want to allow mortgage modifications, the bank that acts as their representative has refused to allow them.

Government Vows to Curb Banks' Foreclosure Practices, But Enforcement Still a Question Mark

Hosts of federal agencies and regulators, along with the 50 state attorneys general, are hard at work on laying out new rules for banks and mortgage servicers. But attempts to reform this process have failed before. Will banks abusing the system be held accountable?

By the Numbers: A Revealing Look at the Mortgage Mod Meltdown

We compiled the most compelling data we could find to show how the mortgage industry and the government's main effort, the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), have failed homeowners.

Loan Mod Program Left Homeowners' Fate in Hands of Dysfunctional Industry

The Obama administration’s flagship foreclosure prevention program has gambled on the willingness and ability of a troubled industry to help homeowners.

Despite Finding Big Problems in Mortgage Industry, Regulators' Punishment Unclear

Federal regulators say they're going to crack down after finding "critical deficiencies" with how banks and mortgage servicers have been handling struggling homeowners. But it's an open question just what form a punishment will take.

Dems: Obama Broke Pledge to Force Banks to Help Homeowners

Candidate Obama pledged to support real change in bankruptcy laws to help foundering homeowners. But when it came time to fight for the measure, he didn’t show up. Some Democrats now say his administration actually undermined it behind the scenes.

Govt's Loan Mod Program Crippled by Lax Oversight and Deference to Banks

The Obama administration’s $75 billion foreclosure prevention program has been weakened, perhaps fatally, by a posture of cooperation—rather than enforcement—with the nation’s biggest banks.

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