The D.C. Council passed emergency legislation to give homeowners in foreclosure more time to negotiate with their lenders.
While the city's housing market isn't as bad as some of its neighbors', foreclosures continue to mount in the District--doubling over the past five years.
Councilmember Muriel Bowser says the new law requires banks seeking foreclosure to sit down with the homeowner for mandatory mediation.
"We put in, basically, a 120-day pause that says if a borrower is delinquent, they must engage with the lender in good faith, face-to-face negotiation for a better solution," Bowser says.
The bulk of the cost for mediation will be covered by the banks. Homeowners will pay a nominal fee of $50.