What do I do if I am Facing Foreclosure?

Aug 1, 2018 | New Jersey Foreclosure Defense, New York Foreclosure Defense

You are not alone if you are being Foreclosed.

If you are facing foreclosure you are not alone.  It may feel like the world is ending, and you do not want to go on, but you are not alone.  As foreclosure defense Attorneys, we help people on a daily basis facing foreclosure.  In 2017, 676,535 U.S. properties in wherein some form of foreclosure according to ATTOM the curator of the nation’s largest multi-sourced property database. Basically, ATTOM tracks all of the properties in the United States so they have a good idea what is happening with foreclosures nationwide.  So, you are one of over 676,000 thousand people facing foreclosure. This probably does not make you feel better, but it gives you the scope of the issues facing America.

Because there are so many people in foreclosure there are both legitimate people trying to help and there are other people trying to take advantage of homeowners who are in dire need of real help.

Beware of Foreclosure Scams

You may be getting letters from organizations with really official sounding names offering a quick fix to all of your mortgage problems. They often charge hefty fees or require that you “temporarily” sign over your deed to them.  Do you your homework.  Are they licensed to work in your state?  How is a law firm in California going to save your home on the East Coast.  Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

These precautions will help you avoid being taken by a scam artist:

  1. Never sign any papers you don’t understand. If they will not answer your questions, run away, do not just walk away from them.
  2. Talk to a lawyer. (We do not charge to talk about your situation, and will work with you to develop a strategy.
  3. Talk to your lender or a HUD-approved housing counselor before entering into any deal involving a loan assumption, contract of sale or a transfer of the deed to your home. Talking the time to understand what is happening, can save you from losing your home.
  4. If you can’t afford your current mortgage, don’t be talked into refinancing into a new loan with a higher payment. A loan modification should be helping you, not hurting you.

I can’t make my mortgage payment. What should I do?

Contact your lender right away. You can find a contact number on your mortgage statement. When you call, be prepared to explain:

  1. Why you can’t make the payment.  You need to explain what type of hardship is affecting your ability to pay. This may seem intrusive, but your lender needs to know what is going on in terms of what options are available.
  2. Is the problem temporary or long-term or permanent? The duration of our hardship effects what kind of help your lender may be able to offer. If the issue is temporary, your bank may offer a forbearance such as losing your job.  However, if you are now disabled and your income is permanently reduced, your options and the long-term solution will be different.
  3. Read all of the mail from your lender.  There will be notices and options lined out in the material that your lender sends you.  If you do not understand what it means, talk to a foreclosure defense attorney to go over your options.

What options will keep me in my home?

If you have an FHA loan, the FHA provides, as part of its insurance contract with lenders, loss mitigation actions the lender must evaluate and take. There are tight deadlines related to these options. Your lender will need information from you to fully evaluate all of your options to determine which ones apply to you. If you want to keep your home, talk to your lender as soon as possible to find out all of you workout options for keeping your home.

Loan Modification / Mortgage Modification: A modification is a permanent change to your loan.  The interest rate may change, the length of the loan payment term may change which can cause the overall payment to go down or up, but the bast due amount is normally recapitalized on the loan so that you are no longer many months behind on your payments, and the loan moves forward after a trail payment plan period that proves to the lender that you should be able to continue to make payments.

Forbearance: Your lender may provide for a temporary reduction or suspension of your payments. This may be just enough time for your to get caught up and deal with the issue that made you fall behind. After the forbearance, you may be offered a payment plan to pay the missed payments so that you are eventually caught up like nothing ever happened. If you are unemployed, you may qualify for an extended forbearance period as long as you are actively looking for work.

FHA Partial Claim: In a Partial Claim, a borrower receives a second loan in an amount necessary to bring the delinquent loan current. The loan will be interest-free and does not need to be repaid until you pay off your first mortgage or sell your house. This option is only available to borrowers with FHA-insured loans. However, if you have a conventional loan, ask your lender if they offer an “advance claim.”

FHA-Home Affordable Modification Program (FHA-HAMP): This option is different than the previous HAMP program that was around.  It only applies to FHA loans.  Most banks have internal modification programs. However, FHA loans have specific steps for a modification using HAMP.

In all of the above cases, for you qualify, you will need to provide your lender/servicer with all of your current information about your income and expenses.

If you have any questions please call Lazaro Cardenas, Esq as he is a Loan Modification Attorney who has helped and currently helps people with their loan modifications.

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