ACORN keeps pressure on subprime lenders, servicers
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.—Chanting, “Sharks bite, ACORN fights – predatory lenders, you’re not right,” dozens of ACORN members on Sept. 26 stormed the offices of Ocwen Financial, demanding that one of the nation’s largest servicers of subprime mortgages modify those loans to keep families from losing their homes. Ocwen CEO William Erbey had ignored a July letter from Florida ACORN requesting a meeting, so members paid him a visit at work. Among the ACORN members were Olga and Paul Gant of Broward County, who told the Palm Beach Post they are facing foreclosure after their monthly mortgage payments jumped from $2,200 to $3,000 per month. ACORN is demanding that Ocwen enact a moratorium on foreclosures, modify loans according to borrowers’ ability to repay and lock in interest rates at pre-adjustment levels.
Similar demands were made in San Jose, Calif., at the offices of Countrywide Financial, where scores of ACORN members gathered to protest that company’s failure to work out loan modifications with homeowners. ACORN estimates 1.8 million adjustable rate mortgages worth $900 billion will reset at higher, unaffordable interest rates over the next two years. As many as 2 million families nationwide are in danger of losing their homes.