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Project Lifeline is a few feet too short

Posted by: Peter Coy on February 15, 2008

Paulson.jpgThe Bush Administration keeps attempting half-fast solutions to a fast-moving problem: foreclosures. The latest is Project Lifeline, a voluntary agreement by six big lenders to consider granting 30-day grace periods on foreclosure proceedings against people who are 90 days or more delinquent on their mortgages. Here’s what Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson (pictured) said about it on Tuesday.

The extra month is supposed to give time to work out a loan modification, but there’s no assurance that it will make any real difference.

Sen. Richard Durbin of Illinois, a member of the Democratic leadership, dissed Project Lifeline, according to an article in CQ Today:

“Homeowners at risk of foreclosure are floating 50 feet from shore while Project Lifeline throws them a 30-foot rope. We need a plan that goes further.”

The six lenders, by the way, account for about half of mortgages. They are Bank of America, Citigroup, Countrywide Finance, JPMorgan Chase, Washington Mutual, and Wells Fargo.

Reader Comments

John Howse

February 18, 2008 1:44 PM

How do you apply for Project Lifeline?


February 19, 2008 10:21 PM

WHAT TO DO? You throw the masses a "Life Line" and they throw it right back

Housing prices can and must crash for any sort of normality to return to the market!!
These people don't need to be propped up by our tax dollars in houses they could never afford to begin with--They need to move out, and RENT something they can comfortably afford, until prices return to the historical mean. With Rent at HALF of what it costs to purchase in many areas, it makes no sense to OWN right now!!!!

Why would you want "help", only to find you are sinking money into a rapidly-depreciating asset that is going to suck you DRY anyway??

That is why millions upon millions of people who CAN make their payments will soon be walking too...they just CAN'T AFFORD this Ponzi scheme called Real Estate any more.

2/19/2008 8:21:01 PM


March 8, 2008 4:22 PM

I'm trying to find out as well. I'm stuck. I can't refi my home and now I'm in an adjustable rate mortage. It raised my payment almost $600.00 more a month. I'm sick of people saying "well you shouldn't have brought the home that you can't afford". This would have happened if if I purchase a home that was $20.000 less. People need to stop blaming consumers.

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BusinessWeek editors Chris Palmeri, Prashant Gopal and Peter Coy chronicle the highs and lows of the housing and mortgage markets on their Hot Property blog. In print and online, the Hot Property team first wrote about the potential downside of lenders pushing riskier, "option ARM" mortgages and the rise in mortgage fraud back in 2005—well ahead of many other media outlets. In 2008, Hot Property bloggers finished #1 in a ranking of the world's top 100 "most powerful property people" by the British real estate website Global edge. Hot Property was named among the 25 most influential real estate blogs of 2007 by Inman News.

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