According to an article in Reuters, there’s a successful foreclosure prevention program that has saved almost 60 percent of its participants from losing their homes to foreclosure.

The article said:

“Philadelphia’s Mortgage Foreclosure Diversion Pilot Program, seen as a national model to stem the foreclosure crisis, resulted in 2,776 properties permanently or temporarily saved from [foreclosure] sale between its inception in June 2008 and May 31 this year out of 4,690 that were referred to the program, according to new data.”

The foreclosure program is overseen by the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas and helps lenders and borrowers reach an agreement that will save the homeowner’s home from foreclosure. ALL LENDERS are REQUIRED to put their foreclosure cases in this program.

This is exactly what we need. One of the failures of the existing foreclosure prevention plans being used by the federal government is that it relies on the voluntary participation of lenders. The result of voluntary lender participation in foreclosure prevention programs is that the foreclosure rate has gone up not down. As of May 2009, there were 321,480 homes in foreclosure. That’s one out of every 398 U.S. homes facing foreclosure, the third-highest level of foreclosures on record.

Senator Arlen Specter is pushing to have legislation passed that will replicate Philadelphia’s foreclosure prevention program nationwide. Also, the U.S. Conference of Mayors made a plea to the nation’s Mayors to pass laws that would require mortgage lenders to negotiate with homeowners facing foreclosure. How did the Mayors of Texas respond? We need immediate action to curb the level of foreclosures devastating our communities. We can’t prevent foreclosure if we depend on lender’s voluntary efforts, we must take action to require them to work with homeowners facing foreclosure. Please take the time out to call your Mayor’s office and ask him/her where they stand on the Specter legislation. Let them know that you believe that even Mayors have a responsibility to help prevent foreclosure.