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Due to an additional funding of $40 million, homeowners in New York who are facing foreclosure will now be able to receive up to two more years of free housing as well as counseling and legal advice.

New York’s Homeownership Protection Program

New York’s Homeownership Protection Program was set to expire next September, but the new funding – which will bring the total amount spent on the program to $100 million – will now extend the program through 2017. According to Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who oversees the program, roughly 34,000 New York homeowners have already received assistance so far. “No individual or family should have to navigate the foreclosure process alone,” Schneiderman said in a statement.

Three Times Predicted Amount

The program’s funding comes from a $25 billion settlement for foreclosure abuses reached in 2012 between state and federal agencies and five of the largest mortgage lenders in the nation. Since the settlement, New Yorkers have received almost $2 billion on assistance in the form of modifications, loan forgiveness, and short sales. This is actually three times the initial predicted amount, according to Schneiderman’s citing of federal statistics that were released in May.

Maureen Steiger

Teacher’s aide, Maureen Steiger  was one of the New Yorker’s to receive housing counseling when two years ago her overtime income was s reduced at the same time her husband Robert lost his part-time evening job as a school custodial engineer. The two sought the help of a company who promised to modify their loan, even paying $1,400 for assistance. But the help never came. The Steiger’s feared losing their home of 25 years. But a counselor at Long Island Housing Partnership was able to get them a trial loan modification in June. The new loan they received is expected to lower their payments as well as reduce their interest rate from 9 percent to 2 percent, Steiger said.

Source: Newsday, Free foreclosure counseling extended 2 years on Long Island, September 29, 2014

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