Some Democrats still hoping for mortgage-assistance program

HUD would help families in trouble make payments for up to 3 years

After nearly a decade of trying, Democrats will again push for legislation this year establishing an assistance program to help families on the verge of foreclosure make their mortgage payments for up to three years.

The program, which would apply only to government-insured mortgages such as FHA- and VA-backed loans, would allow borrowers to keep their homes by making monthly payments not to exceed 35 percent of their incomes.