Bank of America Launches Foreclosure Relief Program

24 07 2009

Bank of America Corp. is mailing letters to borrowers who may be eligible for a foreclosure relief.

The program is part of an agreement the bank made with state attorneys general in October.

BofA has allocated up to $150 million nationwide to assist certain borrowers who experienced a foreclosure, short sale or deed in lieu of foreclosure on mortgages originated by Countrywide Financial Corp. BofA bought Countrywide in July 2008 for $2.5 billion.

Forty states are participating in the program. Borrowers will be notified by letter if they are eligible for a settlement payment. Payment amounts will vary.

Inquiries concerning the foreclosure-relief program should be directed to Rust Consulting at (866) 411-6987 or

The foreclosure-relief effort is one of three components of BofA’s agreement with the state attorneys general.

The second component, the National Homeownership Retention Program, is designed to achieve affordable and sustainable mortgage payments for up to 400,000 borrowers who financed their homes with subprime or payment-option, adjustable-rate mortgages serviced by Countrywide.

The third component provides relocation assistance to borrowers who experience a foreclosure sale and agree to leave the property voluntarily. They are eligible to receive a cash payment to ease their transition to a new place of residence.

Additional information is available at

Revised Truth In Lending Disclosure Requirements

24 07 2009

Effective July 30, 2009, lenders will be subject to new disclosure requirements for mortgage loans under the Federal Reserve Board Truth in Lending Regulation (Reg Z). The new requirements apply to loan applications filed on or after July 30, 2009. The new rules are complex and compliance will be a challenge for lenders. Realtors should understand the basics so that they can advise clients of potential delays and the new procedures. Here are key highlights of the changes:

– The new requirements apply to all mortgages secured by a borrower’s home, including primary and second homes and refinancings. Investor loans continue to be exempt.

– Lenders must give good faith estimates of mortgage loan costs within three business days after the consumer applies for a loan (early disclosure). The lender may not collect any fees before the disclosure is provided, except for a reasonable fee for obtaining a credit report.

– The closing may not take place until expiration of a seven day waiting period after the consumer receives the early disclosure.

– If the annual percentage rate (APR) increases by more than 0.125 percent, the lender must provide a corrected disclosure to the borrower and wait an additional three business days before closing the loan.

– The APR includes not only the interest rate on the loan but certain other costs related to settlement, so it will be important for any fees that affect the APR to be as accurate as possible, as early as possible, to minimize the need for a corrected TILA disclosure.

– The consumer may modify or waive both waiting periods for a documented personal financial emergency, but must receive the disclosures no later than the time of the modification or waiver.

More information is available via the following links:

Federal Reserve Board Final Rule and Staff Commentary (Federal Register, May 19, 2009)
Wells Fargo Website with Its Advice on the New TILA Requirements

Source: Northeast Association of REALTORS

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