TROUBLED ASSET RELIEF PROGRAM: Survey of Housing Counselors about the Home Affordable Modification Program (GAO-11-368SP, May 2011), an E-supplement to GAO-11-367R

Read the Full Report: TROUBLED ASSET RELIEF PROGRAM: Results of Housing Counselors Survey on Borrowers' Experiences with HAMP (GAO-11-367R).

Background

This e-publication supplements our correspondence TROUBLED ASSET RELIEF PROGRAM: Results of Housing Counselors Survey on Borrowers’ Experiences with HAMP (GAO-11-367R). The purpose of this e-publication is to provide the results of a Web-based survey of housing counselors that we conducted between October 21 and November 5, 2010, as part of our work for the report. These counselors belonged to network of counseling agencies that received funding from the National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program (NFMC), which is administered by NeighborWorks America, a national nonprofit organization created by Congress that provides foreclosure prevention and community revitalization assistance. We received over 500 responses out of an estimated 3,500 counselors who could have potentially responded. (The survey was conducted through an online member site for NFMC subscribers, which is maintained by NFMC. According to NeighborWorks at the time of the survey there were 4,864 registered subscribers on the site. While the majority of subscribers were counselors, subscribers also included others such as counseling program administrators and Treasury and other agency staff. NeighborWorks estimated that about 25 percent of subscribers were non-counselors.)

To identify experienced counselors who had direct experience with HAMP matters, we asked screening questions early in the survey to ensure that respondents had at least 3 months of foreclosure counseling experience and had counseled at least five borrowers on HAMP. After removing 106 surveys from counselors who lacked sufficient experience or who had not finished the surveys, we had 396 completed counselor surveys for analysis and we only report on these responses. Because NeighborWorks could not provide an exact number of NFMC counselors who could have responded to the survey, we could not calculate a precise response rate. In addition, the experiences of borrowers who contact counselors might not necessarily be representative of all borrowers who attempt to obtain a HAMP first-lien modification because many borrowers will contact their servicers directly and may never utilize the services of an NFMC counselor or any other counselor. As a result, these results do not generalize to the experience of all borrowers seeking HAMP modifications. However, the data provide insights into the experiences of counselors and the borrowers they have worked with regarding the HAMP first-lien program at the time of the survey.

The survey was designed to obtain the counselors’ views of borrowers’ experiences with the Department of the Treasury’s Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP). Specifically, the survey sought to obtain information on their perceptions of borrowers’ overall experiences with HAMP, HAMP trial modification denials, HAMP trial modifications, the HAMP Solution Center, ways Treasury could improve HAMP, and proprietary (non-HAMP) modifications.

A facsimile of the final Web survey instrument is reproduced in this e-supplement, along with summary statistics for each numeric question and the number of valid responses to each question. We present the survey results in aggregate form so that no individual responses can be viewed and excluded responses to open-ended narrative questions.

We conducted our work from July 2010 to May 2011 in accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain sufficient, appropriate evidence to provide a reasonable basis for our findings and conclusions based on our audit objectives. We believe that the evidence obtained provides a reasonable basis for our findings and conclusions based on our audit objectives.

Contents

Page Name Questionnaire Results
I. Counselor Background Information View View
II. General Borrower Experiences View View
III. Trial Modifications View View
IV. Proprietary Modifications View View
V. HAMP Denials of Trial Modifications View View
VI. HAMP Solution Center View View
VII. Ways Treasury Could Improve HAMP View View
Completed View View
Print and Submit View View

Contact

Mathew J. Scire at 202-512-8678, or Sciremj@gao.gov

(250590)

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