WASHINGTON — The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is applauding the Treasury Department for guidance it issued Thursday that would help members of the military avoid foreclosure.

Treasury's updated guidance loosened the standards for servicemembers to qualify for assistance through the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives program. If a member of the military is being relocated — known as a "permanent change of station" order — he or she can receive assistance through HAFA even if their income has not decreased.

Many military families are underwater on their mortgages — but not delinquent — and face permanent relocation, Holly Petraeus, the assistant director of CFPB's Office of Servicemember Affairs, said in a press release.

"Servicemembers in this situation face an array of tough choices that can include years-long separation from family, foreclosure, and even financial ruin," Petraeus said. "I applaud the Department of Treasury for updating its program guidance to recognize that military orders to move can trigger a genuine hardship for military homeowners."

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.