Fannie Mae Aids Borrowers With Help Centers

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Fannie Mae (Stock Quote: FNM) has rolled out a trial program in Miami that brings mobile “Help Centers” to neighborhoods that promise to make life easier for mortgage holders who need help paying their loans and dealing with loan modification programs.

The free program is a joint venture between Fannie Mae and Miami-Dade County, along with “participating mortgage servicers” according to Fannie’s web site.

According to the agency, the Mortgage Help Center “has been opened in South Florida to help local homeowners whose mortgages are owned by Fannie Mae and who may be behind on their mortgage payments or struggling to make their payments.”

Local residents can either walk into the center (with an appointment) or get counseling over the phone. It looks like the program includes:

  • Explanations of loan workout options.
  • Explanations of foreclosure options.
  • Help gathering and sending critical paperwork to mortgage servicers.

Fannie Mae says it has professional mortgage advisers familiar with the Miami mortgage market to handle consumers' questions and complaints. Help Center advisers also have a direct link to local mortgage companies, so getting a quick question answered isn’t a problem, FNMA says.

Some additional benefits for Miami-area mortgage holders include (from the Fannie Web site):

  • Local point of contact improves the homeowner’s experience and reduces miscommunication with servicers, establishes clear expectations of the process and decreases homeowner frustration.
  • Experienced Mortgage Help Center advisers with direct connection to participating mortgage servicers work productively with homeowners, whose loans are owned by Fannie Mae, and their servicer to complete the required paperwork for the Making Home Affordable Program or other mortgage workout and foreclosure prevention programs.
  • It's a free service endorsed by local and federal government. The Mortgage Help Center is intended to counteract local scams and groups that charge fees for modification and foreclosure prevention services.

If you live in Miami, and want to figure out whether Fannie Mae owns your mortgage, you can either ask your mortgage company directly, check online on the Fannie Mae web site (using the Fannie Mae Lookup tool), or call Fannie Mae directly at (800)7-FANNIE between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.

For the complete skinny, visit the Fannie Mae Help Center Web site.

To make an appointment, contact the Help Center at (877) 208-3652.

—For the best rates on loans, bank accounts and credit cards, enter your ZIP code at BankingMyWay.com.

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