Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Save Our Home AZ Program

On September 22nd I blogged about a new program that was in the works from the AZ Department of Housing, that is supposed to help upside down homeowners. Recently, I have been hearing more about the program, including this flyer that makes it sound really good. So, I decided to call in to get the scoop - how can this program help homeowners looking to do a short sale?

When I called the hotline, the gentleman who answered the phone was nice enough, but could not for the life of him explain anything about short sales. All he could tell me, was that a struggling homeowner is expected to go to the Save Our Home AZ website, and take the Self Assessment. From there, he will be contacted by a HUD certified counselor, who could discuss their options with them.

Fair enough, I am all for a definitive first step. So, I went ahead and called Take Charge America Mortgage Foreclosure Counseling, which is one of the counselors who sees these registrations. The person there also didn't know much about short sales, but was at least honest enough to tell me that he hasn't seen a single person helped through a short sale (to be fair the program IS fairly new), and that their most popular program is the Unemployment and Underemployment Assistance.

In other words ... short sale is a possibility, but how and what ... is really uncertain. And in my opinion, the last thing we need more of in a short sale transaction, is uncertainty. There are many other good programs available now, like the government HAFA program and the Chase incentive program, which are far more popular and which work. Not to mention that regular short sales plain WORK - to accomplish the main goal, which in my opinion is to avoid foreclosure and to permanently dispose of a burdensome debt. 

On September 22nd, I said "Interesting program, but much like other programs, its success is linked directly to its ability to enforce." That remains true ... any program is only as good as its execution. And while I wish the best for Save Our Home AZ program, and still think that its intentions are good - I am not impressed by the execution.

No comments: