Lender Gets H4H Nod From HUD

merica says it has been officially informed by the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) that it may now begin to underwrite, close and insure Hope for Homeowners (H4H) loan transactions without prior HUD review. The approval comes after the Melville, N.Y.-based lender satisfactorily completed the pre-closing review period of the direct-endorsement H4H program, Lend America says. ‘We are very proud to be amongst the first to receive this approval," says the company's chief business strategist, Michael Ashley. He notes that despite "early obstacles" with H4H, Lend America did not "abandon" the program. Lend America is committed to saving 10,000 homeowners from foreclosure, Ashley adds. "We may have to extend our timeline, butâ�¦with HUD's approval, we are moving full-speed ahead to save one homeowner at a time,’ he says. Last week, Maurna Desmond of [link=http://www.forbes.com/2009/05/07/lend-america-mortgages-business-washington-housing.html][u]Forbes.com[/u][/link] reported that Lend America, which has originated 50 of the 51 H4H loans originated so far, is being investigated by the Department of Justice. All 50 of the H4H loans are under federal investigation, according to unnamed federal housing officials. The officials told Forbes the investigation could be in relation to anything from "inadequate documentation to unethical practices." Lend America has also recently added a new Web site, www.refiportfilio.com. The focus of this platform is to help institutional holders of mortgage portfolios use refinancing options, including the H4H program, to monetize their distressed residential mortgage portfolios, maximize cashflow and have a profitable exit strategy. The company says it is currently working with more than 10 institutional investors and loan servicers. SOURCES: Lend America,

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