Home ownership has long been central element of the American Dream. Today, however, millions of American families are now at risk of losing their homes to foreclosure.
I am committed to doing everything in my power to keep Americans in their homes. Since being elected to Congress, I have been working to help hard working American families avoid losing their homes through default or foreclosures. This is why I continue to support the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) which provides help to struggling home owners facing foreclosure. To date, some 600,000 Americans have received HAMP permanent mortgage modifications--with tens of thousands of additional home owners joining their ranks each month. Borrowers participating in the program have seen their mortgage payments reduced by 37 percent on average--saving home owners approximately $500 each month. In total, homeowners have reduced their mortgage burden by more than $5 billion through permanent HAMP modifications.
Recently, there has been a dramatic spike in the number of vacant, foreclosed homes. All too often, as homeowners abandon their property or are forced out of them, surrounding property values begin to decline, crime escalates and neighborhoods deteriorate. To combat this problem, I supported legislation to provide grants and loans to enable states to purchase and rehabilitate vacant, foreclosed homes and convert them into affordable housing. The Seventh Congressional District of Indiana is receiving $37 million in assistance to rebuild dilapidated homes and revitalize our neighborhoods.
This housing crisis has been exacerbated over many years by neglect. That is why it is essential, moving forward, that we fully fund our nation's housing programs.
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