Photo: mar is sea Y (flickr)
More than 4,400 Hoosiers have received $174 million in total relief since last year from a national settlement with the country’s five largest mortgage servicers.
Joseph Smith was appointed last year the Monitor of the National Mortgage Settlement. Smith and his team are responsible for overseeing implementation of the settlement. He says that oversight involves ensuring the five mortgage servicers provide consumer relief, which includes home loan modifications, short sales and mortgage refinancing.
Smith says the settlement is also about making structural changes to the way the banks operate.
“We have also begun the monitoring of their agreements to new and stricter standards of performance in handling distressed loans, loans where the borrowers were in trouble,” he says.
Attorney General Greg Zoeller says he’s happy with Indiana’s response to the settlement, noting more than 18 thousand foreclosed borrowers received direct payments from the banks.
Still, Zoeller says the work is not done.
“I can always ask more of our bank servicers, particularly because Indiana still has problems in terms of the rate of foreclosure and the people that are, let’s say, still suffering some of the consequences,” he says.
Nearly 34,000 foreclosures were filed in Indiana courts last year. According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, Indiana’s delinquency rate earlier this year was 8.5 percent compared to a national average of 6.8 percent.