1st time poster here and hoping to get some answers. Am about $80K (over 40% of value) underwater on my US Bank Mortgage. Have had a severe decline in income in past few years and have recently applied for HAMP. I have a FHA loan. My ratio is currently WELL above the 31% they look for to qualify-it's closer to 60-70% currently and I have been in the house for almost 5 years.
I have been told that US Bank does not have to offer principal writedown as part of their handling of HAMP. Is this true? I do want to keep the house, but having a loan amount of $241K when it is worth $160K currently, the numbers don't seem to add up to me.
I love to negotiate-is it possible to negotiate a principal writedown? From my research, they can get reimbursed up to .63 per $1 of principal written off by the federal government. Why wouldn't they want to do that versus the alternative, which is me walking away from the house and US Bank eventually selling it for $160K (or less) in foreclosure or shortsale.
Advice? Any would be appreciated.