Michael Stegman of the U.S. Treasury, and a trusted housing adviser to the Obama Administration, delivered a speech at an industry conference this week in which he reiterated his support for expanding HARP for non-Fannie and non-Freddie loans.
“We must not forget about the inability of performing underwater borrowers whose loans are held in private label security trusts to access refinancing”
-Michael Stegman, U.S. Treasury Housing Adviser
Stegman has been a proponent of a HARP-like program for Non-GSEs since he joined the Treasury. He has pleaded with Congress to pass a solution and has spoken in support of the “Merkley Mortgage”. Last year he suggested the Treasury would consider a Plan B implementation without Congressional approval. In his speech this week he backed off of those remarks.
However, not all underwater homeowners should consider Michael Stegman an ally. Stegman stated he opposes changing the May 31, 2009 HARP eligibility cutoff date. In fact, he completely downplayed the importance of the date.
“Very few homeowners whose loans were originated after the cut-off date are underwater”, said Stegman.
I’m not sure where Mr. Stegman gets his data, but I beg to differ. If he read some of the comments left by people on makeharp3happen.com he might change his mind.
This is what is so incredibly frustrating about HARP and HARP 3.0 proposals. Bureaucrats keep piecemealing solutions. It is time to stop cherry picking winners and losers. Underwater homeowners deserve a comprehensive home refinance solution that leaves no one behind.