Servicers participating in the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) have been granted a waiver that allows them to determine the event that triggers the program's ’15th day of the calendar month’ rule.
In early July, HAMP administrators issued Supplemental Directive 09-03, which directed servicers to determine the trial period plan (TPP) effective date based on the TPP mailing date to borrowers. The 15th day of the calendar month rule instructed servicers that transmit the TPP to the borrower on or before the 15th day of the month to use the first day of the next month as the TPP effective date. If mailing occurs after the 15th day of the month, the servicer should use the first day of the following month as the TPP effective date.
To facilitate this process, a temporary waiver – which expires Dec. 31 – lets servicers choose the event that triggers the effective date. For example, servicers can base the TPP effective date on the date they speak with borrowers, the date they offer the trial payment terms or the date they mail the TPP to borrowers.
Servicers must document the event used for determining the TPP effective date, and they must also apply it consistently across all eligible HAMP loans. Beginning Jan. 1, 2010, servicers will be required to determine the TPP effective date based on the TPP mailing date to borrowers.
In an unrelated HAMP update, the Treasury and Fannie Mae announced that their current HAMP Data Collector spreadsheet tool, which servicers use to report trial period and official modification data, will be replaced at the end of the year by a new HAMP reporting tool developed by Lender Processing Services Inc. (LPS). LPS began registering servicers for the reporting tool Monday.