Oregon received a "D" grade for its housing market, according to the Corporation for Enterprise Development. The State's foreclosure rate is higher than the national average, and is considered to be sluggishly pulling out of the mortgage crisis.
Advocates for at-risk homeowners aren't surprised by the grade, and they say they will soon be asking the Legislature for more funding on foreclosure mediation. Lenders are now required to offer alternatives to keep people from losing their homes. Emily Reiman is with Opportunity Works in Eugene. She says homeowners have been lining up since the counseling program launched in August.
Reiman: "Through November and December, counseling agencies started seeing more and more clients, and in January, we're actually on pace to see as many clients statewide just in this month, as we saw in the entire last quarter of 2013."
Reiman says some large lenders haven't even started filing mediation classes yet. If the pace continues the groups could run out of funding by the summer. She says they will be asking the Legislature for $800,000 to answer the demand.