Is The Obama Mortgage Plan Big Enough?

As President Obama was unveiling his mortgage relief plan today, Scott Pyper and his crew were boarding up another foreclosed property, reports CBS News chief business correspondent Anthony Mason.

"Unfortunately people fell into tough times and this is the result of it," said Pyper.

Over the last year and a half, Pyper's company, Empty Building Security, has put steel shutters up on more than 700 foreclosed properties in New Jersey.

"It's a growth industry," he said.

Will the president's plan put a lid on that growth? Analysts say it will help many borrowers stay in their homes:

"But it's not big enough," Mark Zandi chief economist at Moody's Economy.com. "It's not bold enough. It's not gonna solve the problem. It's not the silver bullet."

Zandi estimates that nearly 4 million foreclosed homes will be sold over the next three years.

"The housing downturn, the mortgage crisis is only intensifying. And I think even with this plan it'll get worse," he said.

In California last week, a laid off oil worker barricaded himself in his house, writing messages on his roof to be viewed by news helicopters above.

But homeowners like Frank Torres--who said he "felt like [he] had no options" and fell five months behind in his payments after losing his job--won't get mortgage relief:

"If someone has lost their job -- if somebody has no prospect of future employment, they are not going to be helped," said Francis Creighton, vice president of the Mortgage Bankers Association.

And homeowners who are "underwater" may not get enough help either. Nearly 6.5 million people now have mortgage balances that are at least 10 percent greater than the current market value of their homes.

"There are many homeowners who are 10, 20, 30, 40 percent underwater on their homes. And just lowering the monthly mortgage payment, which is the point of the plan, isn't going to solve their problem," Zandi said.

In short, the mortgage relief plan will keep Scott Pyper's team away for many homeowners, but it won't close the door on the housing crisis.
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