Keep Your Home California has reached the century mark, well, actually, the 101 mark.ID-10075420

Keep Your Home California now has 101 mortgage servicers participating in the federally funded, state-run program.

The big-name banks – Bank of America, Chase Home Finance, CitiMortgage, GMAC and Wells Fargo – are on board. So are many midsize and small banks as well as credit unions. These mortgage servicers handle more than 90% of the mortgages in the state.

The participation of servicers – the companies that handle your mortgage – is critical to helping homeowners with their payments and to the success of the $2 billion Keep Your Home California program. Basically, we need all servicers to participate in the program, since they have to be participating so we can help homeowners with their mortgages. (You can check the complete list of servicers at www.KeepYourHomeCalifornia.org/participating.htm.)

Keep Your Home California has four programs – servicers determine which ones they want to participate in. Currently, 39 servicers participate in all four programs, while about two-thirds are enrolled in at least three of the four programs.

All of the participating servicers are enrolled in the Unemployment Mortgage Assistance program, which offers as much as $3,000 per month for up to nine months – a maximum of $27,000. Homeowners must be approved to receive jobless benefits from the state Employment Development Department.

The other programs are the Mortgage Reinstatement Assistance Program, which offers as much as $25,000 to catch up on payments; the Principal Reduction Program, with a maximum of $100,000 to help those eligible homeowners whose mortgage is underwater, and the Transition Assistance Program, providing up to $5,000 to homeowners who are undergoing a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure.

Homeowners can combine these programs. For example, if you’re an eligible, out-of-work homeowner, you can get your mortgage covered by the Unemployment Mortgage Assistance program. Then, after you’ve found a job and are back on your financial feet, you could apply for the Mortgage Reinstatement Assistance or Principal Reduction programs. Eligible homeowners can collect as much as $100,000 per household in mortgage assistance from Keep Your Home California.

Keep Your Home California was established under the U.S. Treasury’s Hardest-Hit Fund with the goal of helping homeowners who have suffered a financial hardship, such as a job loss, reduction in pay, divorce or significant health care expenses.

So far, Keep Your Home California has helped about 21,000 homeowners with more than $250 million since the program started in February 2011. Funds have also been reserved for another 10,000 homeowners pending final eligibility determination.

If you would like more information about Keep Your Home California, check www.KeepYourHomeCalifornia.org (or www.ConservaTuCasaCalifornia.org in Spanish) or call 888-954-5337. The processing center is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. Calls can be accommodated in virtually any language.

Image courtesy of Sujin Jetkasettakorn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net