Home ownership continues to be the cornerstone of the American Dream. Fortunately, the housing market is finally starting to recover from the economic crisis. The most recent data shows that Indiana’s housing market is stabilizing, but we still need improvements in wages and consumer confidence to solidify these improvements.
Unfortunately, too many Hoosiers continue to be just one paycheck away from a missed payment that could lead to foreclosure and the loss their home. One of the best ways to prevent foreclosure is to utilize the federal and other programs that are available to provide assistance, including loan modifications and refinancing. If you need more information, please contact my office, or click here.
I am committed to doing everything in my power to keep Hoosiers in their homes and 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.
That is why it is essential, moving forward, that we fully fund our nation's housing programs.
Rehabilitating Vacant Homes
For families who cannot avoid foreclosure, I am very concerned. Unfortunately, Indianapolis leads the nation in the number of abandoned homes. All too often, as homeowners abandon their property or are forced out, surrounding property values begin to decline, crime escalates and neighborhoods deteriorate. This threat to the health and safety of our neighborhoods must be addressed. 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. I remain a strong supporter of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program which allows localities to reclaim abandoned homes in a way that can strengthen neighborhoods and communities. This program has benefited Indianapolis, which is receiving $37 million in assistance to rebuild dilapidated homes and revitalize our neighborhoods.