SOURCE: Informa Research Services, Inc.

Informa Research Services, Inc.

April 11, 2011 17:16 ET

Federal Home Loan Modifications Decline in February, Says Informa Research Services

CALABASAS, CA--(Marketwire - Apr 11, 2011) - According to recent reports, the number of mortgage modifications granted by a major federal program fell considerably in February. Informa Research Services, a subsidiary of Informa plc (LSE: INF), urges consumers to check online rate tables to locate the best mortgage rates in their region if they are not able to take advantage of federal mortgage assistance programs.

Consumers who had their mortgage agreements altered by the federal Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) during the month of February fell to slightly more than 87,000, down from more than 100,000 in January, according to the latest monthly statistics from the nonprofit coalition Hope Now. Included in those statistics were approximately 61,000 proprietary modifications and 26,147 permanent alterations.

About 49,000 of all the proprietary modifications completed reduced both the loan principal and monthly interest payments, and of those, 36,000 saw savings of more than 10%, the report said.

However, HAMP modifications are often difficult to qualify for, so it may be more beneficial for troubled consumers to look into refinancing their mortgage. By checking the latest online rate tables to obtain the best local mortgage rates, homeowners can save hundreds of dollars on their monthly payments.

Lenders on these tables frequently offer rates well below the current national average. For instance, lenders such as currently offer a rate of 4.75% on a traditional 30 year fixed rate mortgage. The national average on this traditional home loan is 5.06%, according to Informa Research Services' Interest Rate Review.

"While we have seen a decline in overall modifications, we are pleased to see the serious delinquencies once again declined in the month of February, consistent with a trend we have seen in earlier months," said Faith Schwartz, executive director for Hope Now.

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Since 1983, Informa Research Services, Inc., has provided the financial industry's most extensive array of market research, mystery shop, and decision-support information.