Bush to propose subprime plan

President will discuss initiatives for helping troubled mortgage holders keep their homes, make call for stronger lending practices.

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Bush will make a statement Friday morning in the Rose Garden about homeownership financing, a senior administration official said Thursday.

The statement is scheduled for 11 a.m.

"The president will discuss a number of initiatives and reforms intended to help homeowners with subprime mortgages keep their homes," the official said. "He will also discuss reform efforts to prevent these kinds of problems from arising in the future."

Bush will direct Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson to team up to help troubled mortgage holders get the services and products they need to avoid defaulting on their loans, the official said.

He will also push Congress to pass Federal Housing Administration legislation that will give the agency more flexibility to assist mortgage holders with subprime loans, the official said.

The need for rigorous enforcement of predatory lending laws and stronger, more transparent lending practices are also on the agenda for the statement, the official said.

"He will discuss his willingness to work with Congress in a bipartisan way on legislation to reform the tax code to help troubled borrowers rework their loans," he said.

Risky loans have fueled a rise in foreclosures and forced some lenders to shut down or file for bankruptcy themselves. Foreclosure filings, which include default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions, in July were up 9 percent over June - and 93 percent over July 2006. Top of page