Information on the foreclosure prevention initiative in Oakland County.

A new foreclosure assistance program has been created by Oakland County. The goal of the Oakland County Foreclosure Prevention Initiative is to provide numerous forms of help and aid to distressed and struggling homeowners. Qualified homeowners may be able to receive free financial counseling services, negotiating and intervention with banks and their mortgage lenders. They can also receive assistance from attorneys and mediators in negotiating possible settlements and/or new home loans.

Many different local agencies and non-profit organizations banded together to create this service. The program is a partnership project that was created between the Lighthouse of Oakland County, the Oakland County Treasurer's Office, United Way, Wayne County, the state of Michigan, and other public and non-profit organizations. According to Oakland County Treasurer Mr. Meisner, the government and these agencies launched the Oakland County Foreclosure Prevention Initiative to help stem the tide of homes being lost.

The idea behind the Foreclosure Prevention Initiative is to provide multiple forms of assistance to homeowners in Oakland County Michigan, including financial counseling services, intervention with lenders, foreclosure mediation, and assistance in negotiating possible settlements with your lender. Basically the program will do whatever it takes in an effort to assist borrowers.

Maybe best of all, the service is absolutely free to individuals. In addition, it is private and confidential, and people do not need to fear information being released. No public or government funds are being used to support the program, and it is all based on private donations.





Services offered from the Oakland County Foreclosure Prevention Initiative

All of the participating organizations have brought to bear their own resources and initiatives. The program  offers borrowers a place for one-stop foreclosure assistance as well as foreclosure prevention resources, mediation, user-friendly online intake for convenience and efficiency, do-it-yourself features, loan modifications, and continuous communication and updates. Click here to learn more on Michigan mediation programs.

For example, The Oakland County Treasurer's Office, and the partnership organizations and counselors, can bring banks and lenders to the table for negotiations, including possible mortgage modifications. The Oakland County Foreclosure Prevention Initiative provides a standardized process with organized workout packages for the counselors and homeowners. The counselors you will work with in the program will automatically communicate with homeowners and provide updates and information to them on an ongoing basis.

In addition, property owners in need of mortgage help will have a housing counselor perform a foreclosure status assessment. After the initial review has been complete, the counselor will then assist in preparing an emergency budget, reviewing their outstanding debt obligations, and they will conduct a financial status assessment to determine if the family can afford to remain in the home. One of the more recent solutions from the government is known as HAMP 2 Home Affordable Modification Program.

If it turns out that the family would be able to save their home with a little assistance, the lender will be contacted, communication will start, a negotiated settlement will be commenced, and, ideally a settlement agreement will be reached with the lender that will allow the homeowner to save their home.

Contact the United Way at 248-874-1600 to learn more about how to get foreclosure help from the The Oakland County Foreclosure Prevention Initiative.




By Jon McNamara

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