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White House Unveils Home Mortgage Plan


February 12, 2008 · White House Officials unveiled a plan on Tuesday aimed at helping at-risk borrowers avoid mortgage foreclosure.

The initiative, dubbed Project Lifeline, was announced by Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. For qualified homeowners, it will put the foreclosure process on hold for 30 days.

"Project Lifeline is a valuable response, literally a lifeline, for people on the brink of the final steps in foreclosure," Jackson, said at a joint news conference.

Paulson said the plan was just one of a number of approaches the administration was pursuing.

The program was put together by six of the largest financial institutions, which service nearly 50 percent of the nation's mortgages. The participants are Bank of America Corp., Citigroup Inc., Countrywide Financial Corp., JPMorgan Chase & Co., Washington Mutual Inc. and Wells Fargo & Co.

The lenders say they will contact homeowners who are 90 or more days overdue on their monthly mortgage payments and give them the opportunity to put the foreclosure process on hold for one month while terms of their payments can be re-worked to make them more affordable.