For Immediate Release - March 07, 2014

AG Coakley Announces Grant Program to Assist Homeowners Facing Foreclosure and Eviction Throughout the Commonwealth

Funding a Result of Nationwide Settlement Over Unlawful Foreclosures

BOSTON — In a continued effort to provide advocacy and assistance to distressed borrowers in Massachusetts, Attorney General Martha Coakley announces the open application period for the HomeCorps Assisting Homeowners at Risk of Foreclosure or Eviction Grant. Utilizing funds recovered through the nationwide state-federal settlement over unlawful foreclosures, the grant program will extend the work of AG Coakley’s first in the nation HomeCorps program to mitigate the future impacts of the foreclosure crisis.

“This program is designed to best optimize our resources and provide the most comprehensive services to distressed homeowners,” AG Coakley said. “Our HomeCorps program has successfully kept thousands in their homes and continues to work to strengthen our communities by assisting homeowners and preventing unnecessary foreclosures.”

The HomeCorps Assisting Homeowners at Risk of Foreclosure or Eviction Grant will provide approximately $1.5 million for a qualified Massachusetts organization to serve as a Master Grantee to coordinate and oversee a statewide program that will work directly with families and individuals facing foreclosure and eviction. The program will combine loan modification advocacy and borrower recovery/homelessness prevention services.

The Master Grantee will be responsible for all phases of oversight of the program including, but not limited to: accepting referrals for services and providing levels of supervisory and administrative/operational support sufficient to ensure the highest levels of service delivery and quality controls consistent with the scope and scale of this program. Applicants should propose a plan to provide homelessness prevention services statewide via a sub-grantee network of full-time equivalent housing counselors.

The majority of services provided to homeowners supported by this grant program will focus on assisting with loan modification related services. All services delivered by the Master Grantee and sub-grantees as part of this grant program will be delivered at no cost to eligible clients.

AG Coakley’s HomeCorps program has directly assisted more than 10,500 borrowers in Massachusetts, and helped achieve more than 2,100 permanent loan modifications. The HomeCorps program is funded by the national settlement with the five major lenders over their servicing and foreclosure practices.

Since the program launched in April 2012 HomeCorps has expanded a series of initiatives to help homeowners directly. These include a Borrower Representation Initiative to assist homeowners with legal issues that must first be resolved prior to a loan modification or other relief. The Borrower Recovery Initiative seeks to prevent homelessness and help borrowers stabilize and recover after the loss of home ownership due to foreclosure or after eviction that follows a foreclosure.

Interested applicants can visit the Attorney General’s website, www.mass.gov/ago/grants, for additional information about the application process and to download application materials.  The deadline for the letter of intent is March 21.     

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