Miller says lenders agree to give flood victims 'breathing room'

By Chris Rizo | Aug 14, 2008

Tom Miller (D)

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (Legal Newsline)-Three of the nation's largest home lenders will allow victims of flooding and other natural disasters in Iowa to delay making mortgage payments for up to three months, Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller said Thursday.

Wells Fargo & Co., Citigroup and Bank of America Corp., which now includes Countrywide Home Loans, have agreed to help residents in declared disaster areas, Miller said at a press conference in Cedar Rapids.

Homeowners are urged to contact their lender so they might be approved for up to three months without penalty.

"Our top message is this: Talk to your lender right away if you are having a hard time keeping up with your mortgage payments as a result of the disaster," Miller said.

Miller said the program will give Iowans affected by flooding "some breathing space" to get their personal finances in line to avert foreclosure.

"These companies are stepping forward to assist consumers in very important ways, such as agreeing to delay one or two or three monthly payments," Miller said, "but they can't extend any assistance if the homeowner doesn't contact them and work out some arrangement."

From Legal Newsline: Reach reporter Chris Rizo at chrisrizo@legalnewsline.com.

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Citigroup Wells Fargo & Company

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