As of August 1, 2011, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced an amendment to extend the forebearance period for unemployed homeowners from 4 months to 12. Forebearance is a special agreement between lender and borrower to delay foreclosure for non-payment. HUD secretary Shaun Donovan says, “Today 60 percent of the unemployed have been out of work for more than 3 months and 45 percent have been out of work for than six. Providing the option of a year of forebearance will give struggling homeowners a substantially greater chance of finding employment before they lose their home.”