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Nearly 20,000 Nevada homeowners get average of $97,000 in mortgage relief

Nearly 20,000 Nevada homeowners have received an average of about $97,000 as part of the $25 billion national settlement over questionable foreclosure and lending practices by some of the nation’s largest financial institutions.

In total, Nevada homeowners have received more than $1.88 billion from the nation’s biggest banks between March 1, 2012 and March 31 as part of the national mortgage settlement, data show.

“We are pleased the national mortgage settlement monitor’s report reflects numbers that are above and beyond our original estimates. That said, I am still cautiously optimistic, as we work though the crediting mechanisms of the settlement that our numbers will still continue to increase,” Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said in a statement. “I remain concerned with the potential violations of mortgage ‘servicing standards’ set forth in the 2012 settlement.”

Bank of America said it has provided $1.27 billion in total relief in Nevada since the national mortgage settlement was reach in February 2012. The bank said it has assisted 12,352 borrowers, with an average of $102,613 per borrower.

Chase Bank has provided $358.8 million in relief, assisting 3,297 borrowers, for an average of $108,856, while Wells Fargo posted relief of $170.1 million for 2,438 borrowers, with an average of $698,741, and Citigroup reported $85.7 million went to 1,244 borrowers for an average of $68,943.

Ally Financial is not listed among the banks in the Nevada update released Tuesday, having been replaced with a category called RESCAP Parties. The RESCAP Parties have provided $6.35 million in total relief to 81 borrowers, for an average of $78,472.

So far, 621,712 borrowers nationwide benefited from some type of consumer relief totaling $50.63 billion, which represents an average of about $81,437 per borrower, according to data released by Joseph A. Smith Jr., monitor of the national mortgage settlement.

Smith’s primary role is to ensure the banks, Wells Fargo & Co., Bank of America Corp., Citigroup Inc., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Ally Financial Inc., comply with the terms of the settlement by providing billions of dollars to lower loan balances, refinance loans and complete short sales.

The agreement only covers those mortgages held by the five banks, not Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

It’s Smith’s fourth report on the banks’ quarterly self-reported consumer relief data. In June, Smith plans to release his first required report concerning his review of the banks’ compliance with the settlement’s servicing standards.

“Based on my conversations with consumer professionals, elected officials and distressed borrowers, I know there are areas in which the banks still have work to do, and I am using that insight to determine if there are gaps that require future testing,” Smith said.

Smith works with a monitoring committee comprised of representatives of 15 state attorneys general including that for Nevada. The committee also includes state financial regulators, the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Contact reporter Chris Sieroty at csieroty@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Follow @sierotyfeatures on Twitter.

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