"Freddie Mac To Grant Mortgage Breaks To Unemployed Homeowners"
The Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, known as Freddie Mac, announced Friday that it will provide mortgage servicers the power to grant unemployed homeowners who have Freddie Mac-backed mortgages a one-year break on their mortgage payments, the Chicago Tribune reports. The change takes effect February 1 and allows mortgage servicers to provide six months of relief without Freddie Mac approval and six months more with approval — a six-month increase over the current policy. Fannie Mae, the other mortgage provider, is expected to announce a similar policy later. Seriously delinquent mortgages rose sharply in September, and home foreclosures jumped 21 percent in the third quarter of 2011.