Everyone out there is trying to do their bit to save every single house from foreclosure. One such example is a mediation program that was launched in Dayton area last November. It is a mediation referral program where a company, CountyCorp, is serving as a mediator between the banks, courts and the homeowners to ease and speed-up the process of a probable modification. The system of the program was in place in the year 2008; however, it was officially launched only in November 2009. Since then, it has helped about 103 homeowners avert foreclosure.
How does it work?
As per Raymond Dundes, Greene County Common Plea Magistrate, they work as mediators. According to him, “In foreclosure cases where there’s an answer and somebody asks for mediation, or if the file contains anything that indicates the parties need to get together, we order mediation,” and “We keep doing that until we get to a solid loan modification, or they realize they can’t keep the house.” Dundes also stated that they were able to help 815 people suffering from foreclosure in Greene County last year.
In the Montgomery area, the number of foreclosure cases had increased three fold. Almost two thirds of the area was undergoing house seizures in 2009. About 6920 houses received notices last year. To save the situation from worsening, this program was launched. Carolyn Rice, treasurer of Montgomery County, spent about $ 130,000 to roll out the program. This program has helped several people.
A recent example is Tara Smith. Tara Smith lost the eyesight of her left eye after she underwent a cornea transplant. She was on bed rest for a year and eventually lost her job. Today, she works for Montgomery County Board of Development Disability Services preschool.
When Smith came to know that her house was going to be foreclosed, she contacted Bank of America several times for a modification, but in vain. She said, “It was just attempt after attempt,” and “It was me being told ‘Don’t worry about it. You’re going to qualify for this program, that program.’ ” In July, she received the auction notice and decided to contact CountyCorp for help.
They helped Tara Smith get a court ordered mediation and she finally got a modification and saved her home. According to Patterson, “sometimes the homeowner’s biggest dilemma is the servicer (the bank’s representative) has not responded to anything.”
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