It's about time, Citigroup ( C).

The housing crisis has been hammering the economy and Citi's earnings all year, yet the company is only now figuring out that no one wins the foreclosure game any more.

It's outrageous that it took Citi so long to figure out that it's more profitable to help homeowners stay in their homes and make payments than to abandon them and get next to nothing.

It's not like it's unprecedented for a bank to help homeowners. (OK, maybe it used to be). But JPMorgan Chase ( JPM) and Bank of America ( BAC) paved the way with homeowner assistance policies earlier this year.

I guess investors should be grateful that Citi finally pulled its head out of the sand.