People who fall behind on their mortgage payments have long been between a rock and a hard place. Refinancing at lower rates might help to bail them out. But they can't get a new loan without bringing their payments up to date. And even if they did, the blot on their recent credit record can bar them from qualifying for a refi.

Thats why news that PNC Mortgage Corp. is testing a program that helps delinquent homeowners refinance came as a surprise. Indeed, it seems to us the idea could be a sleeper that could have a wide impact on servicing practices.

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