White House and Financial Services Companies Pledge Committment to Service Members
On August 26, President Obama announced a new voluntary partnership with financial lenders across the country that will help deliver important financial and home loan-related protections to our military community.
White House, Financial Services Companies Pledge New Commitments to Service Members
FSR releases report on financial industry’s donations of homes to veterans, families
Washington, DC— In partnership with the White House, five member companies of the Financial Services Roundtable and its Housing Policy Council pledged anew voluntary commitment today to broaden their efforts to offer and apply financial protections to active duty military customers who may be eligible under the Service Members Civil Relief Act (SCRA).
Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Quicken Loans, Citi and Ocwen Mortgage Servicing have all voluntarily pledged to broadentheir efforts to identify, contact and offer financial protections to military personnel who may be eligible. These benefits and protections are required by the SCRA, a law that protects active duty and deployed service members by granting temporary relief from certain financial obligations, including default judgments and foreclosure proceedings, when called to serve their nation. Active duty personnel are not always aware of or do not apply for these benefits and protections and these companies are voluntarily increasing efforts to contact potentially eligible personnel to offer them the benefits and protections.
“The financial services industry remains deeply dedicated to the brave men and women serving our nation,” said FSR’s Housing Policy Council President and 70th Secretary of the Navy John Dalton. “We are proud that the voluntary commitments made in partnership with the White House today reinforce the industry’s overall mission to give back to those who sacrifice the most for this country.”
The pledges include the companies regularly checking their portfolio of military mortgage holders against Department of Defense records to determine active duty status, proactively informing SCRA-eligible service members about their protections and standardizing procedures to allow eligible service members to take advantage of their benefits.
FSR and HPC also released a report today, “Project Patriotism: Home for Heroes 2.0,” detailing the growing efforts of financial services companies to refurbish, revitalize and donate Real Estate Owned (REO) homes to veterans and their families. An estimated 5,500 homes have been donated in the last two years alone through companies’ partnerships with third party nonprofits, and the total number of donated homes could double to nearly 11,000 over the next year if additional companies and the government continue to join the effort.
Home recipients are typically living with injuries or other challenges from their military service, so homes are often outfitted with new wheelchair ramps, railings and other assistive features. The average investment to renovate each property is typically from $15,000 to $45,000.
FSR and HPC encourage more banks, mortgage lenders, financial services institutions and the government to join these efforts.
To read “Project Patriotism: Homes for Heroes 2.0” and to learn more about the financial services industry’s work to serve the nation’s military, visit: fsroundtable.org/project-patriotism.
To view the online press release, please click here.
Safeguard Properties is the largest mortgage field services company in the U.S. Founded in 1990 by Robert Klein and based in Valley View, Ohio, the company inspects and maintains defaulted and foreclosed properties for mortgage servicers, lenders, and other financial institutions. Safeguard employs approximately 1,700 people, in addition to a network of thousands of contractors nationally. Website: www.safeguardproperties.com.