OWN to RENT Program
Citigroup is trying something new to keep struggling homeowners out of foreclosure: turn them into renters. CitiMortgage is painting its new program as a way to help homeowners stuck in houses they can’t afford.
The Home Rental Program will be managed by Carrington Capital Management, LLC and Carrington Mortgage Services, LLC. CitiMortgage and Carrington developed the program as a pilot. Under the program, the eligible borrower transfers ownership of the property to a vehicle established by Carrington Capital and its joint venture partner, Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. A lease will then be established for the property at a manageable monthly payment. (the term will be the key to helping people)
Lease payments will be determined by local market rates but are expected to be lower than the borrower’s mortgage obligation. Carrington will work with borrowers to establish a length for each lease. (bingo) The program will be tested in six of the hardest-hit markets to evaluate its effectiveness: Arizona, California, Texas, Florida, Nevada, and Georgia. Carrington will contact homeowners who meet eligibility requirements.
In order to be eligible for the program, candidates must: Occupy the property; owe more than their home is worth; be delinquent for 120 days; and be unable or ineligible to receive an affordable loan modification while still having the resources to make monthly rent payments. In addition, candidates must have a loan in the pilot portfolio serviced by Carrington.
To implement the program, CitiMortgage has transferred the ownership of loans in its portfolio through the sale of $158 million in mortgages to the Carrington/Oaktree partnership. “We’re looking forward to working on this important initiative with CitiMortgage and our partner, Oaktree Capital Management,” said Bruce Rose, founder and CEO of Carrington. “Offering alternatives for borrowers looking to stay in their homes and simultaneously relieving their distress is core to the operating principles of our firm and will help substantially in the overall housing market recovery.”
Mr. Rose didn’t offer any details on the profit Carrington will make on the homes as opposed to foreclosure or if the lease length will be one year only. The fine print of the lease will tell the homeowner’s if they can be evicted in 12 months so the bank can sell the home for a profit at that time. This would obviously not be helpful to struggling homeowners.
We’d love to see a copy of the lease – if anyone knows someone who fits the qualifications above, please let them know that we’d love to help them to see the lease before they sign.