Two of the nation’s largest lenders are quietly offering some delinquent homeowners a deal.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo & Co. say they give select borrowers behind on their mortgage payments $10,000 to $20,000 for agreeing to short sales, which means the homes are sold for less than what’s owed on the mortgages.
Most banks figure they’re doing homeowners a favor simply by signing off on short sales and forgiving the amount owed. But in some cases, Chase and Wells Fargo borrowers receive that and cash at the closing.
Lenders routinely hand homeowners a few thousand dollars if they leave the properties in good shape after foreclosure. That’s known as “cash for keys.” Also, homeowners are entitled to $3,000 of government money if they complete short sales through the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative program.
But real estate agents and other industry observers say they aren’t aware of other major lenders offering such sizable incentives for successful short sales.
“It looked, to me, like it was a come-on,” said Allison Adler, an agent for the Keyes Co. in Weston.
But Adler checked and discovered it was legitimate. Her client, Sara Horowitz, received $10,000 last week from Chase when she completed a short sale of her Davie townhouse. (more…)