NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Several of the big mortgage players are playing Santa Claus again this year, saying they will not evict borrowers in default during the two weeks surrounding Christmas.
Evictions mark the end of the foreclosure process. After the home is sold at foreclosure auction -- or banks take possession of the home -- owners must leave the property or face eviction notices.
"If the property is occupied, our foreclosure attorneys will suspend the eviction to provide a greater measure of certainty to families during the holidays," said Anthony Renzi, executive vice president of single family portfolio management at Freddie Mac.
For some of the big private banks, who also usually observe a freeze during the holidays, the situation is a little different this year, thanks to moratoriums they already have in place because of the robo-signing scandal.
That freeze was initiated to give the banks time to examine whether they violated any legal procedures in processing foreclosures and to correct and refile questionable documents they uncover.
"Bank of America's practice in recent years [is to hold off on] foreclosure sales or evictions from late December through New Year's Day on loans held in our investment portfolio or that are owned by investors who give the bank delegated authority," he said.
It will continue the foreclosure process for loans it services that are held by investors who decline to participate in the freeze and for properties that are known to be vacant.
A spokesman for Chase Mortgage, a division of J.P. Morgan Chase (JPM, Fortune 500), said its robo-signing-connected moratorium makes an additional holiday freeze moot; it will still be several weeks before it starts to evict borrowers again.
Wells Fargo's (WFC, Fortune 500) holiday freeze will run the same two week period as Fannie's and Freddie's and will, like Bank of America's, include all loans it holds in its portfolio. For the other loans it services, it will follow guidelines from investors and from the states where the properties are located.
|Overnight Avg Rate||Latest||Change||Last Week|
|30 yr fixed||4.20%||4.27%|
|15 yr fixed||3.27%||3.21%|
|30 yr refi||4.18%||4.24%|
|15 yr refi||3.26%||3.20%|
Today's featured rates:
Some Wal-Mart employees falsely told customers Coke was more expensive in New York because of a sugar tax. More
Scotland's independence vote is too close to call but those who want to keep Britain united won this year's campaign funding race by some distance. More
The FBI's new facial recognition system lets local police easily identify you. It will one day spot you from your iris, voice and the way you walk. More
Y Combinator president Sam Altman is teaching a startup class at Stanford with Silicon Valley heavy hitters as guest lecturers. Bonus: All the videos will be available for free online. More
Occupy Wall Street offshoot Strike Debt says it has abolished nearly $4 million in private student loan debt for students who attended Everest College, part of Corinthian Colleges. More