White House Weighs Mortgage Refinancing Programs

ABC News’ Devin Dwyer ( @devindwyer) reports: President Obama’s economic team is actively discussing several new ideas to help struggling homeowners, including another refinancing initiative for millions of government-backed mortgages and possible changes to existing refinancing programs, which heretofore have had only limited success.

“As one would expect, we continue to look for ways to ease the burden on struggling homeowners and to help stabilize the market, whether that’s through assessing new proposals or older ones worth re-considering as market conditions change,” a senior administration official told ABC News. “That said, we have no plans to announce any major new initiatives at this time.”

Some of the proposals under discussion were first reported by the New York Times. The official could not provide further details of who might be eligible for the new programs, how they would work or when – if ever – the proposals might be launched.

Earlier this month, the administration began moving ahead with a plan to transform tens of thousands of government-owned foreclosures into rental homes. The goal would be to prevent the properties from flooding the housing market and further depressing prices.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) is soliciting ideas from the industry and public on the rental program proposal through mid-September.

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